Keaton Jones is sweeping the nation by storm with a clear message: Bullying cannot be tolerated.
If you don’t already know, Keaton Jones is a student at Horace Maynard Middle School in Maynardville, Tenn. His mother, Kimberly Johnson, posted a video of him clearly distraught while being picked up from school Friday because he was “too afraid and upset to go to lunch” due to bullies. If you haven’t seen the video, please watch it. It’s emotional and heartbreaking, but Keaton is ready to take a stand.
Since the video’s release, millions across the nation have chimed in via social media to offer support.
A Go-Fund Me for Keaton’s future education has already raised over $29,000 in just two days and it continues to grow.
Celebrities of all kinds have also offered their support and some have even offered to give Keaton opportunities of a lifetime, including a personal invitation from actor Chris Evans to attend the Avengers: Infinity War premiere next year in Los Angeles and many more.
UFC CEO Dana White invited Keaton to hang out at the UFC headquarters in Las Vegas.
Meet Keaton Jones a very smart little boy who is being bullied at school. This video is heartbreaking!! I want to bring Keaton to Vegas and hang out at UFC Headquarters. If anyone knows how i can reach the family please let me know. Thank u everyone pic.twitter.com/BR8c4ldDFc
— Dana White (@danawhite) December 10, 2017
The Walking Dead actor Tom Payne invited Keaton to attend the Walker Stalker Convention in Nashville.
Hey #KeatonJones Just saw your video about the tough time you're going through. Not sure if you're a Walking Dead fan but if it happens that you are then please be in touch as I would love to see you and your family @WalkrStalkrCon show in Nashville next year. On me. X
— Tom Payne (@justanactor) December 10, 2017
Los Angeles Dodgers reporter Alanna Rizzo invited Keaton to attend a Dodgers game.
Hey, Keaton Jones, do you like baseball? Can you let me know? I cover an an amazingly awesome team that you must see, in an amazingly awesome stadium. @Lakyn_Jones, please let me know. Keaton, you are an awesome boy & I have your back! Stay strong, buddy! https://t.co/zamE6UUi5Y
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) December 10, 2017
Several athletes have also offered their support, including Titans tight end Delanie Walker, as well as current and former Vols.
— Delanie walker (@delaniewalker82) December 9, 2017
Please help me and the @Titans get Keaton’s information. We will not tolerate bullying. I’ll be seeing you real soon Keaton.
— Taylor Lewan (@TaylorLewan77) December 10, 2017
I just spoke with Kimberly Jones about Keaton. She is so thankful and overwhelmed with support. This is what we do Volunteers. We are coming together to address bullying head on.
— Jayson Swain (@SwainEvent) December 9, 2017
— Todd Kelly Jr. (TK) (@ToddKellyJr) December 10, 2017
You’ve gotta be the change to see it blessed to have an opportunity to affect this young mans life! #StayTuned
— Kahlil McKenzie Jr. (@Kahlil_Mckenzie) December 9, 2017
Jayson Swain and Jarrett Guarantano took it a step further Sunday by taking Keaton to the mall to shop and just hang out as friends.
So I got the chance to spend the day with my new best bud Keaton. It was unbelievable to get to know him and realize that we have a lot in common. This dude is very special and has changed my life forever. Now I have the little brother I always wanted! God bless you my man pic.twitter.com/vMHVtnf2rC
— Jarrett Guarantano✞ (@BroadwayJay2) December 11, 2017
Guarantano, along with several other Vols such as Tyler Byrd, Trey Smith, John Kelly and Carlin Fils-aime are going to visit Keaton’s school to show him some love and be there for him.
We going to the middle school next Tuesday show young Man some love we will also TWITTER LIVE some of it so everyone can show there love and support #vols #StopBullying @cboystunna3 @BroadwayJay2 @JKShuttlesworth @smithtrey98
— Tyler Byrd (@D1fuzzymuffin17) December 9, 2017
According to Stop Bullying, 49% of children in grades 4-12 will experience bullying of some degree. Some of the serious effects are:
- Depression and anxiety, increased feelings of sadness and loneliness, changes in sleep and eating patterns, and loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy
- Health complaints
- Decreased academic achievement—GPA and standardized test scores—and school participation. They are more likely to miss, skip, or drop out of school
- Increased risk of suicide
As diehard fans of a university named for the volunteer spirit, it’s time we all lend a hand and support Keaton and those who are affected by this serious issue. Keaton is making his voice heard and is taking a stand against bullying. It’s time we do the same.
Please take the time to visit Keaton’s Go-Fund Me page and as always…Go Vols!