‘Bullied’ schoolboy, 14, ‘lay down in front of train after handing his bag to a friend’ and was killed in front of dozens of horrified students as they headed home from classes
- Youngster was hit by a train in Chertsey, Surrey at around 4pm yesterday
- Paramedics attended the station but child was pronounced dead at the scene
- Headmaster of school says pupils and staff are in shock and receiving support
- For confidential support call Samaritans on 116123, or log on to samaritans.org
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Dozens of horrified pupils saw a 14-year-old classmate die after lying down on the tracks in front of a rush-hour train.
The youngster passed his belongings to friends before jumping off the platform at the end of the school day.
Those who know the pupil – named as Sam Connor – claim he was being bullied at his Roman Catholic comprehensive.
Police were called and ushered pupils from the platform at Chertsey, Surrey, to allow specialists to get to the scene on Monday. Paramedics also attended.
Police at Chertsey station. Officers say the death is not being treated as suspicious
Flowers have been tied to railings at the station today as locals told of their sadness
Salesian School has cancelled its sports day today and brought in counsellors for students
It is understood that a piece of paper found at the station may have been a suicide note scribbled by the Year 9 pupil who went to Salesian Secondary School in the town. Its website describes it as a ‘happy and thriving’ community.
One boy with friends at the school said: ‘It’s horrible. I have friends who were there and saw the whole thing.
‘Sam handed his bag and phone to his friends and then lay down on the track in front of the train.
‘Some of the older pupils were really good – they held everyone back and made sure everyone else was safe.
‘They said he was being bullied. It’s only four days until school breaks up and you’d have thought he’d be able to get help.
‘I’ve met him in passing and he seemed happy. But I guess you never know what’s going on with someone. It’s just a shock.’
Yesterday pupils, residents and parents laid floral tributes at the station, including one mother with a son at Salesian School.
She said: ‘There are issues with bullying. My son used to see Sam on his own in the playground.
‘He never saw him being physically attacked but he knew he was being bullied. It’s just horrific.’
School executive head teacher James Kibble wrote an emotional letter to parents after the tragedy.
The crossing at Chertsey station was taped off this morning as police investigate
British Transport Police say the incident is not being treated as suspicious
‘This is an incredibly difficult situation but knowing the faith, compassion and strength of our school community, I am confident that we will work together to support one another,’ he said. Mr Kibble added that counsellors and an educational psychologist would be on site to provide support.
Samaritans volunteers were also offering support as pupils left school to catch the train home.
A school spokesman said they had ‘no record’ of the boy being bullied and could make no further comment currently.
In a statement the British Transport Police said: ‘Officers were called to Chertsey station at 4pm yesterday (July 15) following reports of a casualty on the tracks.
‘Paramedics also attended but sadly a 14-year-old boy was pronounced dead at the scene. His family have been informed and are being supported by specially trained officers.
‘The incident is not being treated as suspicious and a file will be prepared for the coroner.’
The same paramedics who went to the scene in Chertsey were called to the next station on the line last night where a person had thrown themselves under a train.
The victim at Woking rail station in Surrey could not be saved and was certified dead on the tracks.
No details of the person were available last night and it was not known if there was any connection between the two deaths.
For confidential support call the Samaritans on 116123, or log on to samaritans.org