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Akubra girl "Dolly" killed herself due to bullying, company says

A girl who was the face of an iconic Australian hat manufacturer when she was a child killed herself earlier this month due to bullying, according to the company as well as Facebook posts the BBC reports belong to her father. "Dolly," whose real name was Amy Jayne Everett, was 14 years old.

"This is not an easy post to write," the company, Akubra, said on Facebook Tuesday. "We were shocked and distressed to hear of the passing of 'Dolly' - the young girl many of you will recognise from our past Christmas adverts. ... Dolly chose to end her life last week due to bullying. She was not even 15 years old."

This is not an easy post to write. We were shocked and distressed to hear of the passing of "Dolly" - the young girl...

Posted by Akubra Hats on Monday, January 8, 2018

The post said the girl, Amy Jayne Everett, died January 3, and that "we need to make sure that anyone in crisis knows there is always someone to talk to." It also urged people to act to stop bullying -- a plea her father made Sunday.

"This week has been an example of how social media should be used, it has also been an example of how it shouldn't be," Tick Everett said in a Facebook post. "If we can help other precious lives from being lost and the suffering of so many, then Doll's life will not be wasted."

"...lets stop the bullies no matter where, but especially in our kids, as the old saying goes. You will never know what have untill it's gone," he said.

He added: "if by some chance the people who thought this was a joke and made themselves feel superior by the constant bullying and harassment see this post, please come to our service and witness the complete devastation you have created."

The BBC reports the girl starred in a well-known Akubra ad campaign when she was eight years old. It also reports the family released a statement to media outlets on Wednesday saying the girl was "the kindest, caring, beautiful soul". 

"She was always caring for animals, small children, other children at boarding school who were less fortunate than herself."

Twenty percent of children in Australia say they were bullied over the past year, according to the BBC.

The wide-brimmed Akubra hat is one of Australia's most recognizable brands, the BBC reports.  

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