Draven was a student of Schenectady High School, located in Schenectady, New York. His family is asking for privacy as they deal with his death. Grief counselors were on hand at the high school Sunday afternoon for the students.
In an interview with The Union Times, Draven’s father said his son was very kind, creative and sociable young man
“he honestly just wanted a silly photo because he had a great sense of humor. He had friends all over the country — people he’d met at youth-leadership conferences, online, just around town.”
Although originally against Draven posing with his cat, the school was eventually accepting of the idea. The photo of Draven and Principal Diane Wilkinson used with this article was set to be printed on the principal’s yearbook page to raise awareness for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
Whether Draven had personal conflicts no one else could see, or whether he was a victim of high school bullying, he will always be remembered as the young man who fought to have his best friend, Mr. Bugglesworth, share in one of the milestone events of teen life-the high school yearbook photo.
Rest in peace, Draven. You were loved, both for your gentle spirit and for your willingness to go as far as it took to enable Mr. Bugglesworth to share in such a special photo. You were a leader, and the world really needed you to stick around. It’s sad you never realized how much you were loved by so many.