Their Story Matter with Sara Troy and her guest Laura Suria, on air form March 23rd
My name is Laura Suria. I have a Masters degree in education and a Bachelor degree in Early Education. I am a teacher, mentor, and coach. Later on, in life I decided to further my education in several different healing areas which includes Sound Bowl Therapy, Pranic Healing and as a Practitioner in QHHT – Past Life Regression
I am here today to help raise awareness about the life-changing event that took the life away from a healthy, fun loving, and amazing individual, my daughter Isabell Suria.
Isabell was born on January 11, 2000. She grew up in a small town 20 miles from St. Louis Arch in Collinsville, IL. I am married to my husband Rick, we have been together for nearly 32 years and are coming up on our 22nd wedding anniversary. We also have one other child, her young brother Logan who just turned 17 years old in April. At the time we had our 18-year-old cousin, Dante living with us. He came to live with us after the 2 hurricanes that hit the island.” We Love You Puerto Rico”, was inspired by Dante and his family story.
Our family began on Jan 11, 2000, with a happy, healthy, loving beautiful baby girl. And through her life, she had many amazing achievements. She played every sport offered from 4th to 8th grade and also was on a National Competition Cheerleading team for 9 years. In her freshman year of high school, she cheered on the varsity cheerleading team, while also taking honours courses to get credit for college.
In May 2013, she received her last Gardasil vaccine and 13 days later because ill. She was getting ready for tryouts and the last cheer competition when I decided to run her to the doctor yo check her ear out because she had pain. Little did we know this was the start of years of physical pain. Several years later and many struggles to main good grades and friends we decided to let her hang out with friends to cheer her up. But New Year’s Eve of 2015 is when her life changed forever from physical and now emotions pain. She was at a New Years Eve party, and she was raped by 3 older boys. She was never the same since then. We didn’t find out about the assault until a couple of months after, but when we did we went to the school principal, superintendent and then police departments. This is when cyberbullying started. During the time we weren’t aware of what occurred, she was going to school daily while having those boys in several classes with her. Cyberbullying started to increase and get worse as more people found out. There were several girls who were constantly hateful towards any positive posts of Isabell’s and posts with new friends she was hanging out with. A year after she was sexually assaulted, pictures and tweets resurfaced and were posted on social media about it. It was nearly impossible for Isabell to get away from what happened to her, it followed her everywhere.
After that, we took all the tweets, posts, and hateful texts to the superintendent. All they did was talk to her parents with no punishments. And for the boys, we finally got a response from the DA in June 2015 saying they will not prosecute until we have a video of her saying no. This lead to even more problems with her physical, emotional, and mental state.
We made the decision to take her out of high school because of the negative and insulting comments, her anxiety and stress, the bullying, and the lack of support from the school district. She was enrolled at a local college at the age of 17 and was considered a dual-enrolled student since she was also getting her high school diploma. She tried to stay positive amidst it all, but social media or cyberbullying played a major role in her mental health.
On January 19 of this year, she posted a poll on Twitter with the options of “Just do it” or “Don’t Do it.” 177 people voted, 59% saying just do it, and 49% saying don’t do it. That 59% that said yes didn’t know what they were voting for. I was not aware of this until after.
We did everything we could, got her the best help we could, and tried our best. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough. The nightmares and flashbacks haunted her every single day. On January 25th, 2018, we lost our Isabell.
It was 2 weeks to the day after her 18th birthday. Social media and bullying is one of the reasons we lost her. There is a growing epidemic of bullying and suicide, and we have made it our mission to raise awareness and make a change. Right after her 18th birthday, she went and got a tattoo down her spine that read “From Pain Comes Strength,” which was her motto. We have now started to get From Pain Comes Strength to be a recognized organization. With the help of our family, friends, and other supports, we can make a change. It is a daily effort we all have to make, but if we want it and set our minds to it, I am confident we can make a difference.
Let’s make it all of our’s personal missions to raise awareness of bullying, sexual assault, and suicide, and educate our youth about how we can make a difference between two mission with Pure Mission and Willie J. Willy J heard about Dante and was greatly touched and asked the Suria Family to send personal photos of the devastation of from the hurricane Maria. Within talking to Dante about how bad the condition was and not having power for over 100 Willie J wrote, ” We Love You Puerto Rico” in an effort to draw awareness of how life can change so quickly.
Dante was the same age as Isabell and for the most part, got along and helped each other out. Dante left his family to finish high school in the states because his school was so damaged by the storm. Arron Emig stepped in and started to mentor Dante and Bob Emig Foundation paid for him to attend a local high school where Arron graduated.
The Bob Emig Foundation, a nonprofit 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization, was started in 2004. Founder Aaron Emig, Bob’s oldest son, created the foundation to continue his father’s work in helping youth develop well-rounded lives by providing them a healthy sports experience. Bob as so passed away from suicide which caused years and pain for his family.
After Isabell’s passing Willie J and Aaron Emig asked me to join them at a local bar and grill where we decided to write a song in honour of Isabell.
This is when I introduce my abilities to both of them. I am able to connect with Isabell in a way that can help others. Isabell helped Willie J write her song. She continues to guide us on our journey to help the youth. The song, ” Isabell ” was born the next weekend.
Thank you to all your listeners to hear about our story of Isabell Suria and our foundation From Pain Comes Strength. Also a big thanks to Self Discovery Media Community for an amazing platform to spread our mission of helping our youth. I am honoured to have had the privilege of speaking with you this afternoon. So again, thank you -and remember — From Pain Comes Strength.
“ISABELL” A SONG BY WILLIE J.