Kevin Moore

Moore, KevinName: Kevin Hugh Moore.
Died: January 23, 2019.
Age at death: 55.
Cause of death: Murder.
Location: Greensboro, North Carolina, USA.

Details:
Kevin was a talented musician and composer who attended Winston-Salem’s UNC School of the Arts. In high school, he conducted Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring” entirely from memory, without ever looking at the music. He didn’t graduate from high school; instead, he got a GED and went on to study computer programming at a technical college.

He played oboe and English horn professionally in several major orchestras in Virginia and North and South Carolina. He started a publishing company and arranged custom orchestral pieces for ballet companies and orchestras. He also invented a new kind of shaper for oboe and English horn reeds.

He was blunt and honest, always saying exactly what he thought, a trait that caused some people to dislike him, while others found it refreshing to always know where they stood with him. He had a wry sense of humor.

Kevin’s life was not trouble-free, though; he struggled with anxiety and depression and spent some time homeless before being placed in an apartment by social services.

Kevin and another man, Lewis Franklin Humphrey, were found stabbed to death in Kevin’s apartment. Police arrested five suspects and charged four, but Kevin’s family still doesn’t know why they did what they did. They know Kevin met them at a soup kitchen for the homeless and had invited them over to share his apartment. Perhaps they saw Kevin as an easy target; or perhaps it was because he was gay. The investigation is ongoing, and the family still searching for answers.

References: Talented, troubled and tragic: Inside the unexplained death of a former Greensboro Symphony musician
Details emerge in brutal Greensboro double homicide. Defendants face the death penalty.

Kayden Clarke

Photo of Kayden Clarke. He is a young man with short brown hair and glasses; he is smiling and holding up a small pillow decorated with a picture of a dog.Name: Kayden Clarke
Died: February 4, 2016
Age at death: 24
Cause of death: Police shooting
Location: Mesa, Arizona, USA

Details:
Kayden was active in the online autism community, posting videos of himself on YouTube in which he talked about autism and mental illness, about gender, and about his life in general. One of his videos received international attention; in it, Kayden shows how his dog Samson helps him pull through an autistic meltdown. As he begins to cry and hit himself, Samson insistently paws and nudges at him until finally Kayden sits down on the floor, holding and petting the dog.

Samson, a Rottweiler rescue dog, was Kayden’s service dog. Since the age of thirteen, Kayden had been doing volunteer work for HALO Animal Rescue, a no-kill dog shelter in Phoenix. He adopted Samson and found the dog to be an intelligent, calm, empathetic animal well-suited to be a service dog; so he and Samson began service dog training.

Kayden desperately wanted to go to college, but career coaches kept telling him he “wasn’t ready” and couldn’t do what he wanted to do. He had worked very hard at high school, earning a 3.7 grade point average despite a diagnosis of “cognitive impairment” and learning disability. Kayden posted a video explaining that they were denying him accommodations and refusing to even let him try college because of his disabilities; it was, he said, like “telling a kindergartner they were going to fail trigonometry”.

As an adult, still unwilling to give up on his dreams of college, Kayden got an apartment and a job at Target.

In addition to being autistic, Kayden faced prejudice because he was a transgender man. Assigned female at birth, by his twenties he was transitioning and had chosen Kayden Clarke as his new name. Like many transgender people, he struggled with depression; he had survived one suicide attempt two years previously. Because he was autistic, Kayden faced even more opposition from doctors than most transgender people; one doctor outright denied him hormone therapy.

Despite this, Kayden’s transition was going generally well. In December 2015 he excitedly announced to his YouTube followers that his insurance would pay for surgery. In January 2016, he came out at work and got a new name tag with his new name.

Police officers were called to Kayden’s home due to calls about a possibly suicidal individual there. When police arrived, they found Kayden holding a knife and shot him in the stomach, killing him.

The autism and transgender communities will always miss Kayden Clarke. Despite all the trouble he faced, Kayden was a loving individual who would have given his last dollar to a perfect stranger. He was an advocate for dogs, for individuals with autism, for people with mental illness, and for transgender people. Though he had to deal with so much hate from the world at large, Kayden’s life was still defined by his love for others.

Samson, Kayden’s faithful service dog, is now living with Kayden’s parents.

References:
Amazing Service Dog Helps Calm Owner Suffering An Asperger’s-Induced Meltdown
24-Year-Old Transgender Man With Asperger’s Killed By Arizona Police Weeks After Beginning Transition
Arizona Cops Respond to Call of Suicidal Transgender Man and Kill Him
Arizona Police Kill 24-Year-Old Trans Man With Asperger’s
Arizona Trans Man Shot and Killed By Police in His Own Home
Woman killed by police had viral autism-awareness video
Friends demand justice after cops shoot dead transgender YouTube star with Asperger’s, Kayden Clarke
The Link Between Autism and Trans Identity
His Asperger’s video was inspiring. His death by police was ‘nonsensical,’ a lawsuit says.
New Mesa crisis response team helps tackle mental health calls

Jack Ellis

Jack EllisName: Jack Ellis
Died: Died around March 3, 2014; Body discovered March 8, 2014
Age at death: 20
Cause of death: Suicide (Insulin overdose)
Location: Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, England, UK

Details:
Jack Ellis was an enthusiastic rail fan. A college student, he was being bullied online and in person, and nothing was being done about it. Since he was a teen he had been constantly assaulted and harassed because of his sexuality and because he was a rail fan. He had been sexually assaulted on at least one occasion, and only six weeks before his death, he was beaten up. People sent him threatening messages online and assaulted him in person.

Jack had a "team" of people who were supposed to be helping him, and he lived in supported housing. However, when he committed suicide, he lay undiscovered for "up to a week" (according to the coroner's report), and it was only when his mother called paramedics to check on him that he was found.

References:
Vulnerable Asperger's sufferer, 20, killed himself and lay dead in his flat for up to five days after being mercilessly bullied on Facebook, beaten up and sent threatening texts for being gay
Facebook Community: In Memory of Jack Ellis
Bullying in the railway community: R.I.P Jack Ellis 😦
Student victim of bullying died after taking insulin overdose

Steven Simpson

Steven SimpsonName: Steven Simpson
Died: June 23, 2012
Age at death: 18
Cause of death: Murder (Burned)
Location: Barnsley, South Yorkshire, England, UK

Details:
Steven was a "caring young man with a generous spirit". He was openly gay, sociable, with a large circle of friends. In addition to Asperger syndrome, he also had epilepsy and a speech impediment.

On his 18th birthday, Steven threw a party, where he was subjected to severe bullying which culminated in murder. A group of men crashed the party, coerced Steven into taking off his clothes, subjected him to homophobic abuse, sprayed him with tanning oil and set the oil on fire. Initially, his murderer tried to claim that Steven had set himself on fire, but his lie failed: Steven was still alive and conscious.

Steven sustained burns over 60% of his body and was taken to the hospital. Before he died a day later, he was able to speak to his father and explain what had really happened.

Steven's killer was sentenced to only three and a half years. The killing has been described as "a cruel case of bullying based on Steven’s sexuality and disability."

References:
Attorney-general silent over ‘disability hate crime’ killing
Steven Simpson, Gay British Teen, Dies After Being Set On Fire At Birthday Party
Court of Appeal refuses to lengthen ‘lenient’ sentence of man who burnt gay teenager to death

Asher Brown

Asher BrownName: Asher Brown
Died: September 23, 2010
Age at death: 13
Cause of death: Suicide
Location: Houston, Texas, USA

Details:
Asher was a straight-A middle school student. Classmates bullied him constantly because he was Buddhist, because he was short and pigeon-toed and spoke with a lisp, and because he was gay. Asher had Asperger's. His parents tried to help; they repeatedly asked the school to step in. Nothing was done. The day before he died, one of Asher's classmates had kicked him down a flight of stairs. When he got up, they kicked him down a second one.

On the last day of his life, Asher came out to his parents, who had no problem with his orientation. They think he may also have told other students at school, who likely were not nearly so kind. Whatever happened that day, Asher returned home and shot himself in the head with his father's pistol.

Editor's Note: The primary issue in Asher's case was sexual orientation; however, his Asperger's would have made him even more vulnerable to abuse. Many of the memorials on this site are of people who are in multiple minority groups, a situation that often creates greater danger than being a member of only one minority group.

References:
School Official Faces Suit on Bullied Teen's Suicide
Parents: Bullying drove Cy-Fair 8th-grader to suicide
Asher Brown, 13, shot himself in the head after being bullied for being gay
Asher Brown Suicide: Parents Say Gay 8th Grader Was Bullied to Death While School Did Nothing
Parents: Bullies drove 13-year-old to suicide