Student With Viral Laser-Cat Yearbook Photo Committed Suicide

This is truly heartbreaking. Draven Rodriquez, the Schenectady High senior who inspired smiles around the Internet with his laser-tastic, fluffy cat-cuddling yearbook photo, has committed suicide.

The 17-year-old took his life at home on Thursday, according to the Daily Gazette. Draven went viral last Fall after petitioning to have the creative photo with his cat, Mr. Bigglesworth, be his official senior portrait.

He told the Daily Gazette in September: “I don’t want to go in the yearbook with the generic ‘I-look-like-everyone-else’ photo. I wanted a ‘He looks great. Only he would try that’ photo.”

Unfortunately, the school district vetoed its inclusion among the boring, normal senior portraits. The school’s principal, however, agreed to pose in a similar-style photo with her dog.

The duo’s photo, taken by the original photographer, Vincent Giordano, would run on the principal’s yearbook page along with a pro-animal rescue message.          

Our thoughts go out to Draven's family and friends during this sad time.

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