The father of a San Antonio, Texas, area teenage boy said his son apparently killed himself while participating in the satanic “Blue Whale Challenge” that is spreading on social media.
After playing the game online, the parents of 15-year-old Isaiah Gonzalez found him hanging in his bedroom. His father, Jorge Gonzalez, wants other parents to know about the dangers of this game that is believed to have originated in Russia, Fox News reported.
“It talks about satanic stuff and stuff like that and my son was never into that,” the teen’s father told KSAT ABC12 in San Antonio. He said his son showed no signs of being involved in anything like this. “We had no signs at all. Isaiah was Isaiah.”
Police in San Antonio told the local ABC affiliate this is the first they have heard about this game. The game reportedly involves online predators who target teens using cellphone apps and chat rooms.
It appears Isaiah live streamed his suicide as part of the game. His parents found his cell phone propped up with a shoe to point it at his final act.
During the game, the victims are challenged to do increasingly dangerous acts. They are said to be threatened with acts of violence against their family if they fail to execute their tasks. The final task is reported to be suicide.
There are 50 daily tasks assigned to the victims, the Washington Post reported. Officials blame the game for deaths all over the world. It is played out in Facebook groups and Instagram, the newspaper reported.
Isaiah’s mother, Angela Cantu-Gonzalez posted a tribute video to her son’s memory on Facebook.
Isaiah’s sister, Scarlett Cantu-Gonzalez told WOAI reporters that others knew about his participation but did not warn his family. “They blew it off like it was a joke and if one of them would have said something, one of them would have called us, he would have been alive,” she said.
A teenage girl in Atlanta, Georgia, is also said to have become a victim of the game, CNN reported. The 16-year-old girl, her parents withheld her name, painted pictures that appeared to be abstract art. In retrospect, images of blue whales can be seen in the paintings.
“So these were paintings that she drew that were displayed at an art show at school,” her brother told CNN. “At first look, you don’t think anything of it, you just think of an abstract painting.”
In May, School officials in Baldwin, Alabama posted this warning on Facebook to advise parents of the dangers of the “Blue Whale Challenge:”
Jorge Gonzalez warns parents to take action to prevent this tragedy from happening to their children. ““I want them to go through their phones, look at their social media,” he said to reporters from KSAT. “If they’re on that challenge already, they can catch that from happening.”