Broward County

7-year-old Broward foster child hangs himself after tantrum

Gabriel Myers, a 7-year-old Broward foster child, hanged himself in his shower in 2009.
Gabriel Myers, a 7-year-old Broward foster child, hanged himself in his shower in 2009. ho

From the Miami Herald archives on April 18, 2009.

By the age of 7, Gabriel Myers had lost his mother to the ravages of drug addiction and incarceration, had been shuttled between an uncle and two foster homes, and had been in limbo for months as child welfare administrators in two states sought to reunite him with a grandfather.

His sad odyssey ended Thursday after he locked himself in the bathroom of a Margate foster home, announced his intention to kill himself and then hanged himself before the 19-year-old son of his foster father broke down the door. Child welfare administrators say Gabriel used the cord of a detachable shower head.

Administrators of the Department of Children & Families, which had custody of the youngster since June 2008, say they are investigating Gabriel's death. Representatives of several agencies and service providers met late Friday to begin gathering records and looking for answers.

"It's tragic every time a child dies, but it's particularly difficult when you have a 7-year-old whose life ended so tragically, " said Jack Moss, who heads DCF's Broward operations.

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