EDGEWOOD, Ky - Two teenaged girls, across three states, linked by one website. Their lives collided and were forever changed after one, final word was typed on a social networking site: "Goodbye."
Anna Clark, 19, sat on her couch and typed furiously upon the keys of her laptop, which was situated across her legs. She scrolled up and down, reading over various blog posts on one of her favorite social networking sites, Tumblr. That’s what she was doing Sunday night around 11:10 p.m. when she read something that would change her life and save another.
The NKU anthropology major said she read 16-year-old Laura’s post and was alarmed by what the girl she had only met briefly at a convention in Columbus, Ohio, in January, wrote on her blog page.
"The post said, 'I just swallowed a bunch of pills.' I scrolled through her blog really worried. Things like 'goodbye' and 'it was stupid to think anybody cared about me.'"
But she cared.
"That's wrong, people do care about you, heck, I cared and I barely even knew her."
Clark, in Edgewood, Ky., and Laura, in Novi, Mich., only knew each other by their screen names.
That's when networking saved Laura's life.
"I re-posted her post on my blog asking people for information about her," said Clark, who was panicked about what to do.
According to friends online, Laura had moved recently from Florida to Michigan.
From those online friends, Clark was able to obtain her name, address and phone number. Then she raced upstairs to her mother, Toni Meinhert, who was asleep.
"She was shaking, crying... nearly hysterical," said Meinhert.
They called 911, who referred them to the Novi, Mich., police. Within minutes, an officer was en route to the girl’s home.
With the information Clark had about Laura, Officer Tim Farrell tracked down where she lived just after midnight.
The teenager had taken several prescription pills and was barely alive. Her mom, Rosa knew she was depressed, but thought she was asleep in her room.
She said she was grateful Clark acted so quickly to save her daughter’s life.
"She [did] the right thing at the right moment," said Rosa.
"Right now, I'm happy. I'm happy that my daughter is alive. The most important thing is that my daughter is alive right now."
Meinhert, not only a mother, but also a nurse, said that posts on social networking sites should be taken seriously.
"Please listen to them because even if they haven't made a plan and they haven't carried it out, there's reason behind why they're even saying it. And that's what needs to be looked at before it's too late."
Rosa told Meinhert that Laura is still in the hospital getting treatment, but said she'll be OK—all because of her daughter Anna.
“Your Anna is my angel,” Rosa said to Toni.
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