Mitchell Wilson worked so hard to be a normal, happy-go-lucky kid. Lord knows fate didn’t make that easy. The 11-year-old lost his mom to cancer three years ago and was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy the following year. He never could run and jump like the other children. Still he always maintained that goofy grin on his face. He was a joker who loved swimming and go-karting, driving with his dad and making silly jokes with his younger stepsisters. And Mitchell loved to walk. Six times a day, he’d be pounding the pavement around his Pickering home because the doctors told him he had to “use it or lose it” — that the only way of slowing the atrophy of his muscles was to exercise them. And while he used a walker at school — more as protection from the jostling of his fellow students — he proudly walked outside on his own, his young shoulders pressed back so that he could maintain his fragile balance and not fall.
“Everybody in the neighbourhood knew him. He walked in the rain. He walked in the snow,” recalls his dad, Craig Wilson. “Every step Mitchell had to make was like 10 steps of ours in effort. I don’t think I ever understood how hard it was for him to do the simple tasks.
“He tried so hard to make it through each day and he was so tired at the end that he could barely make it up the stairs.” Yet he never gave up — until a young bully stole his will to live; A young offender who will likely walk free next week. Mitchell’s father is a big man, tough and strong with a smile that comes easily — until he begins relating what happened that morning, just over two weeks ago, when he went into his son’s bedroom to wake him up for his first day of Grade 6. “I relive it every morning,” he says softly. “It’s a horrible thing.”
His best buddy was gone. His tormented 11-year-old child had tied a plastic bag around his head, weary of the bullying and terrified of the young mugger he was supposed to face in court next week. “If he had been treated with respect, if he had been treated with some empathy, some sympathy,” his dad says, “he’d probably still be here.” It was during one of Mitchell’s beloved walks last fall that everything changed.
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Other stories related to the death of Mitchell Wilson.
– Accused Found Not Guilty In Teen Bullying Trial
– Dead Bullied Boy’s Statements To Be Heard In Court.
– Boy Identified Accused Before Death, Officer Says.
BY MICHELE MANDEL,TORONTO SUN