Many teens around the Burlington City area have expressed sorrow about two Burlington Township High School students, Mike Steve, 18, and Adnan “Ado” Halkic, 15, who recently committed suicide.
“When I heard about the first kid, Ado, I was pretty surprised,” said MFS junior Jess Richards. “As far as I knew, he was a cute kid, popular, a varsity football player as a freshman. A lot of my friends were upset since they go to the same school, and it was hard to see them that way … I was really heartbroken when just days later, Mike, a senior, took his own life on Monday night. There was hardly any time to get past Ado, and then another classmate passed … no one had any idea that neither Mike or Ado had issues and everyone was caught off guard upon hearing of their deaths, that bothered me. All I could think about is whether or not I knew anyone who could be struggling with the same things.”
Richards attended Halkic’s memorial service, posted a picture on Instagram, and stood up in Meeting for Worship to raise awareness for Ado, Mike, and the issue of suicide in general.
Susan Batastini, Educational/Psychological Coordinator at MFS, noted important lessons to be taken from the situation.
“It’s a great tragedy of course to see any teen or young person take their life. I think what it does is affects us all … People are struggling with a lot of things. I think we need as students and staff to be aware … and be sensitive to the whole thing. We always encourage students to come to me if they’re worried about something, or someone else. It’s important to reach out to a person if they’re struggling. Saying, ‘Hey, what’s up?’ is really important … to support and be sensitive to what’s going on with our teens can not be stressed enough.”