A New Jersey mother is speaking out against bullying after her 11-year-old daughter was found dead in her school’s bathroom.
Felicia LoAlbo-Melendez was discovered by another student inside of a bathroom stall at F.W. Holbein School in Mount Holly, New Jersey, on Feb. 6, the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office told Daily Voice.
Officials at the school immediately responded before she was rushed to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia; she was pronounced dead two days later.
PEOPLE reached out to Mount Holly Township School District but did not immediately hear back.
Felicia died by suicide, the Philadelphia Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed, according to the outlet. Her manner of death was complications related to her attempted suicide.
“An investigation into the student’s death by the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office, which included a review of the school’s surveillance cameras, determined that she was alone in the restroom when this tragic action occurred,” the prosecutor’s office said, according to NJ.com.
The Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Felicia’s mother, Elaina LoAlbo, said her late daughter had emailed officials at her school and told them she was being bullied just days before her death, per NJ.com. She accused the school of “breaking the laws” when it allegedly did nothing about her claims.
“She herself had written numerous emails to the administration detailing the events, yet no one was ever questioned,” Elaina told NJ.com. “They have swept under the rug, the bullying that she and so many other kids in that school have encountered and now they’re doing the same with this investigation.”
In one email sent to the school, Felicia also asked to begin a “trauma club” to serve as a space where students can discuss trauma and triggers, Elaina told the outlet.
That email said, according to her mother: “I was watching TV and thinking about the things in my life that happened to me and I got a great idea. Instead of drama club, it would be a trauma club … I would help and provide as much as I can. It would need a room that is not too big and not too small. We would need a couple of chairs too. But I hope this does happen. I for one have heard from my friends and others about things that have happened to them and I think this would be a fantastic thing. Have a great night. Go dragons.”
Elaina expressed that her daughter “is not the only one” who was a victim of bullying.
“Felicia’s email will not go unheard,” she told NJ.com. “This isn’t about me. This is about our children.”
In an emotional Facebook post shared on Friday, Elaina said, “We all have stories, we all have voices, now is the time for our voices to be heard.”
She noted that the Burlington County Sheriff’s Department is planning on closing the case “without completing an investigation and questioning key people or showing me, the mother, any proof of these allegations.”
“Just like the school, I feel like they are trying to sweep it under the rug. News and media outlets are now focusing on the overall bullying within the school system. And it’s our turn to be heard!” she continued.
She went on, in part, to state that signs of bullying “can include mental anguish, emotional distress, physical harm, and at times even result in death,” adding: “No matter whether the child bullied committed suicide or were physically harmed by their bully, it MUST stop PERIOD.”
She shared that her daughter’s school “failed me,” adding: “We need to do better; we need to help these children that come to us begging for help. It’s time to speak up. The school administration didn’t listen the first 50 times. Maybe they are ready to hear us now. This bullying needs to stop. There need to be consequences for their actions.”
The Burlington County Sheriff’s Department did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Elaina shared a voice note from Felicia that was originally posted on April 1, 2021.
“If you are listening to this, my name is Felicia,” the child is heard saying in the message. “Say hello to future mom, future dad … future everyone. Never, never, never be bad, never give up on your friends, never, ever … be a bully.”
Seth Turner, whose daughter was friends with Felicia, called her one of the “brightest kids I have ever known.” He shared during a school board meeting last month, according to New Jersey 101.5, that his daughter also knew Felicia was getting bullied by classmates and “confided in me.”
“I failed to convey this information to any teachers or staff in time for anything to be done, and I need to apologize for this,” he said. “While no response to the death of an 11-year-old girl can ever be truly adequate, our response to this tragedy so far has been pathetic.”
He continued, per the outlet, “Felicia deserves better. She deserves a full investigation, she deserves a full accounting and she deserves truth — and I hope that we can give it to her.”
At the time of her death, Felicia was mourning the death of her father, New Jersey Transit Police Detective Alexis Melendez, who died nearly two weeks before her.
The agency said in a tribute via Twitter he would be “remembered for his hard work and dedication, his cheerful demeanor, and his deep laugh. No matter the assignment or detail, Detective Melendez’s presence was always an asset.”
According to Daily Voice, he died of pancreatic cancer.
In her obituary, Felicia is described as “a compassionate human everyone wishes they could be. Felicia was truly kind and selfless who inspired others with her radiant personality. She was the most loving daughter, sister, granddaughter, niece, cousin, and friend that will be deeply missed.”
She is survived by her mother and two older brothers as well as several aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.
This absolutely breaks our hearts. If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by dialing 988, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741741 or go to 988lifeline.org.