Suman Virk, mother of a Reena Virk the B.C. teenager murdered 20 years ago has died at age 58. The family issued a statement but didn’t reveal the cause of her death.
For those who may recall, Reena Virk was 14 when she was beaten and drowned by her peers.
The teen’s death spearheaded anti-bullying campaigns across the country, as her family turned their grief into a national campaign that made a very positive impact on society.
Suman and her husband, Manjit, became champions of inclusion.
They shared their story in schools across Canada, working to turn their daughter’s legacy into something that would help other teenagers.
Around 200 people gathered along the Gorge Waterway in Victoria to mark the 20th anniversary of Reena’s death in November. The site overlooked the beach where Reena was attacked.
At the ceremony, Reena’s father Manjit said he and Suman had been worried about their daughter’s struggles to find acceptance among her peers at the time of her death.
Six girls were convicted of assault causing bodily harm and sentenced to a maximum of one year in custody.
Warren Glowatski and Kelly Ellard were convicted of second-degree murder, having drowned Reena after the other girls beat her.
Ellard remains in prison with day parole.
Glowatski took rehabilitation courses in prison and speaks as a mentor to young people at risk of getting involved in crime.
Bullying in the past 20 years seems to have gotten even worse and more intense with the advent of social media. Since the death of Reena Virk, many others have met a similar tragic fate. Bullying in school and online is one of the leading causes of suicides and depression among youth. – CINEWS