Grief counselors help students after third grader's death - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

Grief counselors help students after third grader's death


SOPHIA (WVVA) An unimaginable tragedy continues to unfold after the death of a 9-year-old boy in Sophia. 

Grief counselors continued to provide services to students at Sophia Soak Creek Elementary School on Tuesday, to help students cope with the loss of third grader Jackson Grubb. 

Grubb's family said the third grader was bullied, tormented to the point that he felt death was his only escape. 

"I took him to lunch, shopping so that he would talk to me, but there was something else that was going on," said Betsy Baber about the days leading up to Jackson's death. 

According to officials at Raleigh County Schools, no incident of bullying was ever reported or investigated at the school.

Baber, who was also Jackson's legal guardian, confirmed on Tuesday the she never filed a report, adding that many of the details surrounding her grandson's death are only now coming to light. 

"I haven't spoken to anyone from Soak Creek Elementary School, and as far as the bullying, yes, it was going on at school," adds Baber. 

Grubb's brother, Tyler, 15, is also struggling with the loss, saying he saw a glimpse but never the true depth of Jackson's despair.

"Lately, I haven't been with him. He's been sort of distant. He wouldn't sleep in the room with me or play." 

Raleigh County Superintendent David Price reaffirmed the school system's no-tolerance policy for bullying on Tuesday, saying each incident is dealt with on a case-by-case basis. He said every school implements character education classes for each grade, as a preventative measure against bullying. 

The Raleigh County Sheriff's Dept. also released a statement on Tuesday, saying "foul play is not suspected. The child's body was sent to the WV State Medical Examiner's Office for examination. The circumstances surrounding the death remain under investigation." 

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