It is with great sadness that I write this to share the news of the passing of my 14 year old transgender son Finn who died unexpectedly on June 19, 2017
We are asking for help to cover expenses and lost income during our grieving process, to be able to provide treatments not covered by insurance such as massage and energy work for our family, as well as to be able to attend some upcoming retreats which would facilitate our emotional health as we adjust to life without Finn. We are also hoping to set up a scholarship fund in Finn's name and also help to fund a film project which speaks to the messages of love that Finn portrayed in his life and death, but that may be down the line...first we have to get our feet in the ground.
Finn was a wonderful, caring, person with great talent and love to give and share. He will be missed by all of us who knew him.
Here is a bit more information about Finn: He struggled with depression and anxiety in 5th and 6th grade, and in 7th grade, attempted suicide four times before coming out as transgender. On May 21, 2016 he called me from the adolescent psychiatric facility he was in and said, "I had a moment of clarity last night. I'm a boy inside, and I want to be called Finn." I said, "Welcome, Finn."
Eventually he came home and went back to his beloved Maharishi School, where the kids meditate twice a day. The school brought in a gender spectrum specialist to educate the faculty, staff, students, and parent community. He told the Headmaster, Dr. Beall, that he wanted to learn everything there is to know. He got straight A's. He was a loving, inclusive peer. He was given the coveted Alexander Grace award for Kindness, Courage, Wisdom, and Integrity. He just started his first job at Everybody's, the local organic grocer. He was thriving as a transgender boy in our community. We thought the roots were taking hold in the soil.
Then one night, after learning that we'd been denied state insurance for the second time which would cover his puberty blockers (the precursor to taking Testosterone in October), and that the injected medication's (Lupron) company Abbvie had told us we were slightly over income to qualify for their patient assistance program, and that the $1400 copay of my BCBS was too much for us to afford every month (and we had already depleted our savings from the previous month's shot),
Finn became hopeless of the road he faced ahead, and quietly slipped out of the house while I slept, and lay his body across the railroad tracks three blocks away.
Below I am including a copy of the speech that Finn made at his 8th Grade Graduation on June 7, about two weeks before he died. We should not lose sight of his great progress this year and all the love and support he received…and appreciated.
Thank you again for your support from me and my family. Love, Heidi
Finn's Graduation Speech
"I reached excellence this year by working hard, but also taking my emotions and well-being into account. This as a result has, lifted a weight of several tons, off my shoulders. I have continued to be diligent and ambitious, while not burning myself out.
For my entire life, I have felt insecure about my appearance, my safety and my worthiness. I have struggled to present myself as the person that I truly am, and in my own personal best form. I feel 8th grade has helped me blossom and move towards happiness, fulfillment, personal success and safety. I can trust that I will get through hard times with resilience, perseverance and integrity.
Before I started this journey, I found public speaking and speaking in general to be very challenging. I was afraid of judgement and that nobody cared about what I was going to say. English Language Arts has helped me overcome this fear, but also to learn to tame it when it does come up. Part of our homework was to read for 30 minutes, and when we finished a book, we had to do a book review. This is basically a presentation where one talks about the book under five key headings and end with a personal recommendation. This assignment was especially frightening for me because I had to speak in front of the entire class of 11 people including the teacher who grades the presentation. But, as a result, more was gained than lost. Over the year, I have become increasingly more confident when speaking in front of a crowd, and I hope that the audience enjoys it too.
This year has taught me so much, and I am eternally grateful for everyone in my life. I really appreciate everyone’s support and acceptance, that has kept me going through these tough years. I am the Little Engine that could, because I have a supportive community who got me thinking, “I think I can, I think I can.”
Below is a link to Finn's photo video.
And Here's the link to Finn's memorial service in Fairfield, IA
- Randy Robertson
- Claire Foley
- Leslie Jane
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