Massachusetts boy dies after attempting TikTok ‘blackout problem’

by: Nancy Asiamah / WWLP, Nexstar media cable

Posted: 6/17/2021 / 8:49 AM EDT
Updated: 6/17/2021 / 8:49 AM EDT

AMHERST, Massachusetts (WWLP) – A grieving family from Massachusetts tries to raise awareness of the dangers of a social media challenge that resulted in the death of their eighth grader this week.

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Amherst Regional Middle School student Nate Squires was found unresponsive at home Monday after attempting the “blackout challenge,” his family said on a GoFundMe page.

The social media challenge, which has grown in popularity on TikTok, encourages kids to suffocate themselves until they pass out.

Samantha Thomas, a sister-in-law, said the “whole family feels like the carpet has been ripped off”.

“Families all over the world are losing children as a result. If you are unable to donate, we ask that you reach out to a child in your life and talk to them about the Blackout Challenge, ”said Thomas, who organized the GoFundMe.

The “Blackout Challenge” has existed for years, in which the participants endure suffocation until they pass out in order to get a feeling of euphoria. In April, a 12-year-old boy from Colorado died after taking part in the challenge.

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The dangerous challenge, which has grown in popularity on TikTok, is also known as the “Pass-Out Challenge”, “The Game of Choking” or “Speed ​​Dreaming”.

Founded a day ago, GoFundMe raised over $ 24,000. Their goal is $ 25,000 to help “relieve any financial stress” they may face in the coming months as they manage the tragedy.

“Both Rachel and Dave [Nate’s parents] wants the world to know about the circumstances surrounding Nate’s death to make sure it doesn’t happen to another family, ”said Thomas.

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