(NY POST) – A 12-year-old Texas boy who felt “sad and lonely” amid the coronavirus lockdown measures hanged himself, his father revealed in a report about the tragedy.
Hayden Hunstable, of Aledo, took his own life three days before his 13th birthday in April 2020 because he didn’t know how to deal with the isolation and depression when the emerging disease caused a nationwide shutdown, the UK’s Metro reported.
The boy’s 9-year-old sister, Kinlee, found him hanged in his bedroom, according to the outlet.
Hayden’s heartbroken dad, Brad, 42, spoke to Metro to help prevent future suicides among the nation’s youth.
“COVID killed my son. I think Hayden would still be alive today if COVID had never happened,” the father of three told the outlet. “I had no idea he was struggling or depressed — he was such a happy kid and loved his friends and family.”
Calling the pandemic a “perfect storm for suicide and depression,” Brad said: “I think everything just got on top of him, he felt overwhelmed and he made a tragic decision.”
On April 17, he recounted, the water went out in the family’s home and Brad’s father came over and Hayden helped them fix the problem.
“It was a beautiful sunny day and I gave him a hug and a kiss on the head,” the grieving dad said.
“Then when my dad left, there was just me, Kinlee and Hayden at home. There was only a 30-minute window, Hayden had gone upstairs,” he said.
“Then my daughter ran downstairs and said Hayden has hung himself. I ran up there, pulled him down and tried to save him,” Brad continued.
“I performed CPR but I couldn’t save him. He was gone. I saw something horrific that day and I don’t wish it upon anybody. I still get nightmares about it,” he said.
The dad said his son was hit hard by the lockdown, which made it impossible to hang out with his friends, and took a strong dislike to virtual learning.