Greenfield parents say their 10-year-old killed himself after relentless bullying

The parents of Sammy Teusch said they contacted their son’s school 20 times about bullying.

GREENFIELD, Ind. — Ten-year-old Sammy Teusch was known by his family for being spontaneous, like when he jumped into a pond in 50-degree weather at the sight of some little waves.

His little laugh and his big smile may not be heard or seen around the Teusch home anymore, but those will live in their hearts forever.

“He was my little boy. He was my baby. He was the youngest one,” said Sammy’s mom, Nichole Teusch.

His family said Sammy killed himself Sunday morning, May 5.

“I held him in my arms. I did the thing no father should ever have to do, and anytime I close my eyes, it’s all I can see,” said his dad, Sam Teusch.

According to Sammy’s family, he was being bullied up until the night before he died. They said it started last year in elementary school and continued this year at Greenfield Intermediate School.

“They were making fun of him for his glasses in the beginning, then on to make fun of his teeth. It went on for a long time,” Sam said.

What started as words, they say, progressively turned physical.

“He was beat up on the school bus, and the kids broke his glasses and everything, and I called the school, and I’m like, ‘What are you doing about this? It keeps getting worse, and worse, and worse. And it’s not getting any better. In fact, it’s getting worse,'” Sam said.

His dad said that was just one of the 20 times he’d been in contact with the school about the bullying.

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13News reached out to the superintendent of schools, Dr. Harold Olin, for an interview and although he wasn’t available, he did answer questions. 

Olin said there was no bullying report ever submitted by the parents or the student. But he also said the school’s administrators and counselor had regular conversations with the family throughout the year, though he can’t share the content of those conversations.

“They knew this was going on. They knew this was going on,” Sam said.

Sammy’s family said the bullying progressed from school and the bus to places like Snapchat, even despite him having limited access to his phone.

“‘I’m going to beat you up. I’m going to beat you up when you get to school.’ Saying mean things about his Nicki, which would really, really set him off,” Sam recalled.

But despite frequent conversations about listening to those who love you, Sammy’s family said he became withdrawn and stopped opening up.

His suicide, they believe, was because he feared going to school after an incident in the bathroom last week and the constant harassment.

And while the family may be putting Sammy to rest in the coming days, his mom wishes she was saying good night instead of goodbye.

“I always tell the kids because Sammy and his sister went to bed first because they were younger, and telling them they had to brush their teeth to get ready for bed and having him not be there to hug before bed,” Nichole said.

Services for Sammy will be held at Brandywine Church at 1551 E. New Road in Greenfield. Viewing hours are Tuesday, May 14 from 2 p.m. until 8 p.m. His funeral will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, May 15, with a gathering back at the church after graveside services.

Bullying resources

If you or a child you know is dealing with bullying, there are resources available.

The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry has a full bullying resource center. Stomp Out Bullying has resources for parents of children who are being bullied. has resources focused on cyberbulling, which can follow kids even outside of school. 

If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call or text 988 to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. It’s available 24/7.

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