Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Draven Rodriguez, the Schenectady High School senior who took his life earlier this week.  According to an article from the Times Union, he died Thursday in his Schenectady home.

Draven was a bright, charming, and quick-witted boy who became famous last fall when he took a photo with his cat Mr. Bigglesworth with lasers in the background and tried to get it put in his yearbook.  The photo went viral and was covered by many national news outlets and television shows like Ellen and Jimmy Fallon.

Vincent Giordano ,Trinacria Photography

Just like so many other things Draven set out to do, he was successful in getting his photo into his yearbook.  Additionally, Schenectady High School principal Diane Wilkinson and Draven posed in a dual laser photo with both of their pets that will be featured in a section of the yearbook devoted to encourage students to adopt cats and dogs.

When Sean, Richie and I found out what happened to Draven, we all were devastated.  We had him on our show in September when his photo went viral, and based on just the short time we spent talking with him, we felt like we had known him for years.  He was warm and funny and smart.  After we interviewed him we collectively decided he would have a very bright future.  We are all so sorry to hear what has happened.

On behalf of Sean, Richie and all of us here at WGNA, we want to pass along our deep sympathy to everyone who had the pleasure of meeting Draven, or as we lovingly called him, Schenectady Cat Boy.

Calling hours are 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday at the New Comer Funeral Home, 343 New Karner Road, Colonie. Funeral services on Friday will be private.

Click here to learn more about how you can help stop suicide.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1 (800) 273-8255
24 hours, 7 days a week

www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org