Nex Benedict : Vigil for Nonbinary Teen in OK – Tragic School Bathroom Fight

In a heartbreaking incident that has left the community in shock, a vigil was held at All Saints Episcopal Church in McAlester, Oklahoma, for Nex Benedict, a 16-year-old nonbinary teenager who tragically passed away following a fight in a high school bathroom. The vigil, organized by the McAlester Rainbow Connection, was attended by over two dozen people and aimed to show support and solidarity for Nex and their family.

Background of the Incident

Nex Benedict, a student at Owasso High School in Oklahoma, identified as nonbinary and used they/them pronouns. The altercation that led to their untimely death occurred when three girls, who were reportedly bullying Nex and their friends, attacked the teenager after water was poured on them. Nex bravely shared their experience with the police in a video released to the public, shedding light on the bullying and harassment they faced.

Community Support and Vigil

Matt Blancett, from the Rainbow Connection, emphasized the importance of holding a vigil in McAlester to show unity and support, especially in light of the tragic murder of transgender man Dustin Parker in 2020. All Saints Priest Janie Koch highlighted the significance of reaching out for support during difficult times and watching out for one another as emotions run high.

Investigation and Vigil Details

Following the incident, Nex’s mother, Sue Benedict, called emergency services as Nex’s condition deteriorated. Despite initial intentions to press charges, Sue Benedict later requested that the police address issues at Owasso High School instead. A search warrant was executed at the school, collecting evidence and investigating the circumstances surrounding the altercation. While the cause of Nex’s death is still under investigation, preliminary autopsy results suggest that it was not directly related to the fight.

Moving Forward

As the community mourns the loss of Nex Benedict, additional vigils are planned in Oklahoma and across several states, including California, Washington, Minnesota, New Jersey, Texas, and New York. The outpouring of support and solidarity serves as a reminder of the importance of standing together during times of tragedy and advocating for a safer, more inclusive environment for all individuals.

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