Daisy Coleman, a tattoo artist and sexual assault survivor who founded the nonprofit SafeBAE, has died by suicide at the age of 23, according to a Facebook post from her mother, Melinda Coleman, on Tuesday.
“She was my best friend and amazing daughter,” Melinda wrote on Facebook. “I wish I could have taken the pain from her!”
Coleman was featured in the 2016 Netlix documentary “Audrie and Daisy,” which followed the stories of Coleman and Audrie Pott (who died by suicide in 2012) after they were sexually assaulted as teenagers. Coleman alleged she was raped at a party in 2012. Though he was charged, her perpetrator’s sentence was reduced to probation and an $1,800 fine. Once word got out about Coleman’s allegation, she faced ruthless bullying at school and her home was burned down.
To support others who have survived sexual violence, Coleman founded the peer-led organization SafeBAE (Safe Before Anyone Else) in 2017. SafeBAE works to end sexual assault among middle and high school students. According to the organization’s website, SafeBAE has reached more than 5.5 million people so far.
“We are devastated to share with all of our inspiring supporters, that we have suffered an irreplaceable loss,” SafeBAE wrote following Coleman’s death, adding:
As many of you know, she’s struggled with healing for many years and had been making incredible progress, but healing is never a straight path and can often have setbacks. But she would want you all to know how much she loved this work and all of you who have joined us in it. Nothing inspired her more than knowing she could help other survivors and work to prevent sexual violence.
If this news is hard for you, know you are not alone — and there is help for people who feel suicidal. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.