Michael (“Mikey”) Graham was an athletic and popular eighth grader at Henry H. Wells Middle School in Putnam County, NY. He liked to play football, basketball, lacrosse and video games.
On January 14, 2013, Mikey Graham found one of his father’s unlocked, loaded guns, and committed suicide.
Mikey seemed happy–not sad or depressed–according to his half-sister, Alexandria Bodden, who played video games with him the day before he died. “He must have gotten angry for some reason,” she said, and “at that age, you’re not thinking how final a gun is.” “We truly believe it was impulsive,” she added.
“If those guns were locked up and secured, or were never in the house, period, this would have never happened,” said Alexandria.
Many suicides are impulsive. And guns are deadly–they’re fatal in 85% of suicide attempts vs. just 5% by other means. Guns are the most common method used in teen suicides–and more than half of youth who commit suicide with a gun obtained the gun from their home.
Mikey’s father had three guns in his home, and Mikey found one of them, unlocked and loaded.
Hear from Alexandria Bodden, Mikey’s half-sister:
Take action to protect children from unlocked guns by supporting A8293, “Nicholas’s Bill,” the Child Access Prevention or Safe Storage Act.