UPDATED: Kathleen Edward, 9, of Trenton—Who Had Been Taunted on Facebook—Dies

Kathleen Edward, the girl who made news all over the world after she was taunted on Facebook about two years ago, died late Wednesday night.

After a long battle with Huntington's disease, Kathleen Edward, the 9-year-old girl who was taunted on Facebook in 2010, died at about 10 p.m. Wednesday night, according to Trenton Mayor Kyle Stack.

Kathleen was at her father's house in Wyandotte when she died.

Kathleen was the center of a feud with neighbors, on Detroit Street, that eventually led .

Laura Edward, Kathleen's mother, died as a result of Huntington's disease in 2009.

Kathleen's grandmother, Rebecca Rose, said she had mixed emotions about Kathleen's death.

"A part of me is angry as hell because I shouldn't have to bury my daughter and granddaughter," Rose said. "I'm happy that she's not suffering anymore. She’s back with her mother again."

Rose said she was feeling very alone, but the hundreds of Facebook posts she received Thursday morning were comforting.

"I was sitting there crying and the only thing that comforted me was all the posts on Facebook," Rose said. "It warms my heart that so many people knew what an amazingly beautiful and perfect child she was."

Renee Chilson, principal at Southgate’s Fordline Elementary School where Kathleen attended, said grief counselors are on hand, but that officials are taking a hands-off approach to discussing anything publicly.

“We are trying to make this as normal of a day as possible for our students,” she said. “At this point, our main concern is for the family, our students and our staff.”

Kathleen and Rose were part of a story that touched the lives of more than 1 million Trenton Patch readers after an article about Kathleen went viral in 2011.

Emails poured in from people from all over the world from places as far away as Australia and Great Britain and from people across the United States. Thousands of emails, comments and Facebook posts to show Kathleen that the world had her back.

Trenton Patch editor Nate Stemen's in-box was flooded with emails offering cash and flowers and everything in between.

For a moment it seemed the world stood united for Kathleen and her family.

"I feel for the family," Trenton Mayor Kyle Stack said. "I would like people to know to keep them in their thoughts and prayers. She was such a sweet little girl."

in court on alleged personal protection order violations. The families have a court date coming up that could finally settle a feud that has been going on for more than four years.

The Petkovs and Edwards have a court date scheduled for 10 a.m. Jan. 23 in front of Judge Lita Popke at the Coleman Young Municipal Building in Detroit.

A memorial for Kathleen Edward will be held at Michigan Memorial Funeral Home in Flat Rock according to Rose.

She added Kathleen will be buried next to her mother at Mount Hope Memorial Gardens in Livonia.

"I really want everyone to know how much I appreciate all the condolences and the kind words and for remembering her beautiful smile," Rose said.

People wishing to offer condolences should reach Rebecca Rose via email at roserebecca23@yahoo.com.

Additional information about Huntington's disease including early-onset cases like Kathleen's can be found on the U.S. National Library of Medicine's website.

This story was updated at 10:28 a.m. Thursday with quotes from Rebecca Rose. This story also was updated at 12:36 p.m. Thursday with information from Fordline Elementary School. Wyandotte Patch Editor Jason Alley also contributed to this story. An additional update was made at 4:52 p.m. with quotes from Trenton Mayor Kyle Stack.

ellvee February 03, 2012 at 05:16 AM
Well said. I'm very sorry for the loss of that beautiful little girl and her mother. My heart goes out to the family and to all of the people who love them.
Ryan James February 08, 2012 at 03:16 AM
Kathleen you have a special place in my heart!!! You truly are a courageous little angel!!!
Mary May 20, 2012 at 08:18 PM
If your mad at this happening to her or someone you know then call or talk to the appropiate people who can pass the law on cyber-bullying and bullying. Dont let this angel and what happened to her family keep happening. Stand up and sign a petition to stop bullying in any form. Kathleen fly to the arms of your mother and be happy.
Donna Hughes February 02, 2013 at 10:25 PM
I think that the whole case of what these grown adults did toRebecca and Kathleen was so horrible, uncalled for, immature and hopefully will be dealt with with a nice punishment. Ultimately what you dish out comes back and slaps you 20x harder then what you dished out. There is something mentally wrong with them to have done this to the grandmother and Kathleen. May Kathleen now RIP and Ms. Rose realize that she is in no more pain and with her mom and Jesus. These people will be dealt with and ultimately have to face their maker at some point in time and he will be the judge as to what will happen.
Jeanne-marie Tran February 03, 2013 at 12:25 PM
You are so right! As a teacher of (severely) emotionally disturbed and mentally ill I had to be with them all day because of the bullying, and when they had PE, I was on the field in the face of every kid who thought they could get away with anything when the Coach wasn't looking, AHHHHH, but I WAS there and I was in their little faces and when they would try to trip or body slam one of my or any other Special Ed teacher's kids I didn't just watch to see what happened, but when the coach gave the regular kids "a break" but blamed the special ed kids for a clash of behaviors, even when the regular ed kid was twice the body size in height and weight, and you know that these smaller SpEd kids weren't looking to die and wouldn't pick a fight with someone twice their size, so you know who was bullying who...so who does the Principal defend, even if I was there and saw it all, the Coach, and what comes of body slamming my same age but less physically developed kids, after listening to the fabrications of the Coach...actually sometimes my innocent kids are sent to the office for solitary confinement there, victims once by the perpetrator, victims twice when the coach tells a story that vindicates the regular kid and blames the SpEd kid. We have an anti-abnormal society, Van Gogh was mentally ill but was treated by his family and his neighbors critically concerned and that was extremely important. Acceptance crucial, help critical, love the greatest healer, shall we try, its free...


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