“Stand Up For What Is Right, Regardless Of Who Is Committing The Wrong” – A Letter From Zoey Kerr G. Ray Bodley High School Class of 2024 Senior

On April 30th, 2023 Brady Niver and Rylee Bartlett were in a tragic car accident. Rylee, a 17 year old teenager, was killed at the scene of the accident. Brady, a 16 year old teenager, continued to fight for his life for eight days, but eventually succumbed to his injuries. Rylee and Brady were juniors at G. Ray Bodley High School and members of the class of 2024. Our small town community of Fulton, New York felt this tragedy to the bottoms of our hearts. Rylee was a fierce and beautiful young woman. Her face was always serious but when she did smile it was nothing short of magical. Brady was kind, funny, thoughtful, energetic, brutally honest and a jokester. His strength and determination are what set him apart. To know Brady is to love Brady. Several organizations and scholarships have been created in their honor including the “Rylee Bartlett Memorial Scholarship” and the #BradyStrong Inc. nonprofit organization.

Additionally, Isaac Bartleman, a 14 year old teenager, died on February 27, 2020. Isaac was an extremely kind and loving young man who was always up for a fun joke or sharing in a good prank. He had the ability to spread joy everywhere. Isaac was an 8th grader at Fulton junior high school and a member of the class of 2024.

Our class was heartbroken over the deaths of our fellow classmates.

On Wednesday June 6th, 2024 our graduating class was informed that chairs will not be left open at our graduation to honor our classmates who have tragically lost their lives. The Fulton City School District has made this decision even though thousands of community members disagree. Our community is rallying together to push for change and fight for what is right.

These three teenagers should be walking the stage with the G. Ray Bodley High School Class of 2024. Please help us spread our message!

Attached is a Facebook post created by a triplet sibling of Brady Niver as well as the obituarries of the three students.
Facebook Post
Brady Niver
Rylee Bartlett
Isaac Bartleman


Thank you,

Photo From Favebook

Zoey Kerr
G. Ray Bodley High School Class of 2024 Senior

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  1. The empty chairs should included the whole board members that voted on this…true shame on all of you.

  2. Have the moment of silence. That is fine. It is sad yes, tragic yes. However, I have also heard that the Niver family wanted a tribute video and a decorated chair and so on. This tragedy did devastate the community. However, and I know the Niver family and supports will trash the daylights out of the following because despite the Brady Strong message, understanding of opposing views, not so much. The family has already felt their children were better than others. I have watched the mother berate coaches over the years and demand more playing time even when not warranted. I’m all for supporting your kids. However, every event for this class has always been forced to include a Brady theme. Even looking at the Fulton facebook post about the high honor award breakfast it shows that people clearly refused to acknowledge or congratulate the hard work of those students and instead used it as their own person platform to complain about the decision and try to social embarrass the district into giving it and clearly it worked. Shame on you all for ignoring those students for your own gain. The graduation is about the entire class. Sad, extremely sad that three members won’t be there. Interesting that it is always mentioned how Brady died and Rylee but not Issac who killed himself. That kid hasn’t been mentioned one time since 8th grade at any event. Where has been the push for suicide awareness. This is more than about chairs, for most it is about one families struggles with a severe loss but forcing their grief on the entire community and taking over every event for all the rest of the students this year to serve their own grief. Grieve, have your loss, the community mourns with and for you still and always will. Let these other kids enjoy. Heather got angry and threw a fit when the memorial had to come down at Brady’s elementary school and then the high school. Again please look at the bigger picture and stop trying to make the day about just three kids. Celebrate all of them including the three it isn’t a memorial service though regardless of how hard you want or need it to be. It is really sad that all the hard work and wonderful children are getting lost. I pay taxes in Fulton and my opinion of just having the moment of silence without decorating a chair as a memorial and not having a video performance that would just turn some kids to tears on a happy day also needs to be respected. There are always to sides to every argument.

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