Felicity Warburton was escorted to her prom by nearly 300 bikers after she was mercilessly bullied throughout her childhood. The 15-year-old schoolgirl, who once contemplated suicide because of the bullying, felt “worthless” after she was tormented for being different. Warburton has Asperger’s Syndrome and is dyslexic, according to her parents.
The girl’s mother decided to reach out to the WAC Motorcycle Club, having asked for help via Facebook. Kathryn Warburton requested that some of the bikers attend the prom at the Worcester Warriors Stadium with her daughter.
Kathryn Warburton wrote on Facebook, saying that “Felicity has been looking forward to her prom as she feels that this will be the point where she can show them (the bullies) that they can’t hurt her anymore. They have bullied her so much she has even contemplated suicide in the past year, so I really want her prom to be everything she wants and needs it to be.”
The girl’s parents expected a few bikers to show up but instead, nearly 300 bikers made it to the celebration on Monday night. Felicity Warburton showed up to prom with a massive group of bikers, all of whom were completely supportive of the young teen. According to her parents, the entourage proved that the bullies “can’t hurt her anymore.”
Dawn Thomas, a spokesperson for the WAC Motorcycle Club, explained that “we were initially contacted by Felicity’s mom Katie to see if we would provide a few of us on bikes to escort her to her prom.” Thomas admitted that the prom’s date changed a few times before of Covid-19, “but when she had a firm date, I posted it on our Facebook page and stood back and marveled at the response.”
The spokesperson said that both “Katie and I were bowled over with it all. There were a few other groups involved and we ended up with over 200 bikers escorting her [Felicity] on the ride of her life.”
According to Felicity Warburton’s father, Rich Morrish, the family was “blown away already by the amount of people in the car park when we got there. We were only expecting about 10 or so people, and there were already about 50 bikes, and then they just kept on coming batch by batch to the point that they were all lined up on the grass verge, it was mind-blowing.”
He continued, explaining that “to see we had over 200 riders was nuts – bikers get a bad rep but they were absolutely phenomenal, they were very respectful to her.” He admitted that “the confidence it brought out in Felicity as well was amazing, over the last year she’s had constant bullying going on, the school [has] done what they can, but they can’t do everything.”
Morrish told reporters that his daughter usually has a bubbly personality, but it disappeared as of late because of the incessant bullying. He said that having his daughter “not be that person anymore [was] tragic to see.”
Rich Morrish explained that he is an anti-bullying advocate and “hates” it. He said that the best way to combat bullying is to “make a statement.” He claimed, “that’s exactly what we did on Tuesday night, and Felicity was at the helm.”
The girl’s mom said that Felicity Warburton is a world Adaptive Judo silver medalist and that she loves bikes. These traits led her to be picked on and “called weird,” her mom explained.
Greg McClarey, the headteacher at Blessed Edward Oldcorne Catholic College, said in a statement that “our Prom on Tuesday for our former Year 11 students was a joyful celebration of their time at our college.”
He claimed that “the last 18 months have been incredibly challenging for them and we wish all our former students the very best of luck as they move onto the next phase of their education. The college has robust policies for dealing with allegations of bullying and these policies are regularly reviewed. All allegations are taken seriously and dealt with thoroughly by the college.”
Rich Morrish admitted that he was so proud of his daughter for standing up to the bullies. He said that “proud of her doesn’t even touch it, she’s an amazing girl and she hasn’t deserved any of this, so to see her light up like a Christmas tree was absolutely fantastic.”
He continued, saying that “when she sat on that trike and I looked at her, it was like time stood still and I just thought, ‘we’ve got our daughter back.’ She was in there all that time, and it just took something big and something special to show how loved she is. When you’ve got someone crunching you down time and time again, you don’t see anything good in yourself.”
Morrish said that “to see that smile break out on her face was very overwhelming. I’m incredibly, incredibly proud of that girl.”