The Langlade County Coroner says traumatic brain injury looks to be a major factor that led to the suicide of a 16-year-old Antigo High School student.
Friends and schoolmates on social media had put the blame on Noah Simonis' self-inflicted death on bullying. However, a post from his mother seems to suggest that's not the case. On a Facebook page in her son's honor, Wendy Simonis writes verbatim:
"let me clarify a little lots is going around...Noah was not bullied...he took a little teasing sometimes but no more than anyone else...he had problems just like every teen...but he had amazing friends and family that loved him...their is no blame or guilt...life is just complicated and solutions are at times difficult to find...so please do not point fingers...he was loved and deep down he knew that"
Coroner Larry Shadick says Simonis, a multi-sport athlete, suffered a mild concussion in November 2012, followed by a more serious one a month later. Shadick says his mood began to change thereafter.
Simonis died on Monday. All week students have created make-shift memorials including leaving flowers on his desk and adorning his locker with photos.
This is not the first time concussions have been suggested as a factor in suicide. The issue gained national attention following the death of NFL veteran Junior Seau. In January, his family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the NFL, claiming the linebacker’s suicide last May was caused by head trauma he sustained over more than 20 seasons in the league.