Huron County mom whose son killed himself due to bullying is spreading kindness

Updated: Oct. 10, 2019 at 8:05 PM EDT
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HURON COUNTY, Ohio (WOIO) - Anna Hershieser will be organizing the second annual Smile for Kindness photoshoot this Saturday.

After more than two years of advocating for suicide awareness, she has no intentions of slowing down any time soon.

“I could receive 100,000 phone calls of good things,” she said, “but I’m going to keep going until the day I die.”

Anna lost her son Caleb to suicide on April 2, 2017. He had been bullied for years in the Williard School System. That October, her family paid for a billboard to be put up in his honor.

The billboard has since been a kick-start for Anna’s mission to spread messages for suicide awareness and anti-bullying. She explains she has already felt the impact of her work in her own community in all kinds of places.

“Walking through a store, not knowing who a person is...and they approach us, thanking us for what we’ve done,” she said.

Saturday’s photo shoot will start at Calark Park in Monroeville. The group will then travel to the notable Blue Bridge for another set of photos using this year’s theme: “Spread Kindness Like Confetti.”

Anna hopes to keep Caleb’s billboard up for as long as she can afford it. In the meantime, she will continue to advocate for helping others — anything, as long as it prevents another tragedy like the one she and her family experienced.

“It’s not a journey I wish upon anybody, not the worst criminal behind bars,” she said. “I don’t want to see it happen.”

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