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Jennifer Petkov Apologizes for Taunting Dying Girl Online, Web Responds with Donations

kathleen edward and jennifer petkov
In case you didn't see the story of the Detroit-area woman who inexplicably felt the need to taunt a dying 7-year-old girl on Facebook, let us simultaneously ruin and brighten your day. It begins with Jennifer Petkov and her husband Scott, of Trenton, Michigan, who decided to bring a feud with their neighbors to the social networking site. Jennifer targeted the young Kathleen Edward, who is in the final stages of Huntington's Disease, and her mother Laura, who died of the degenerative brain condition in 2009, by posting images of Kathleen over a skull and crossbones, and Laura in the arms of the Grim Reaper, according to WJBK.

If there were any doubt to Petkov's guilt or intent, it was roundly refuted by a terse, remorseless statement she gave to local reporters. When asked why she would feel the need to post such horrible images on Facebook, Petkov responded, "Personal satisfaction, 'cause it rubs their ass raw." You can watch the whole story from My Fox Detroit after the break.

But just as the Internet can be used to exact personal vengeance against dying children, it can also be used for good. Users of Reddit and 4Chan (with their history of vigilantism) jumped all over the story, as did Facebook users, who, shortly after the story broke, set up groups such as 'Jennifer Lynn Petkov is Downriver Trash' and 'Jennifer Petkov: Don't let Trenton's door hit ya on the ass' (replete with their own horrible photoshops).

But then, Jennifer Petkov began to receive death threats, as her voicemail was bombarded, her house was egged and scores of neighbors and strangers held a candlelight vigil for Kathleen and her family. Petkov issued an apology to the family in an interview, saying, "If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn't do it." You can judge the sincerity of her apology yourself.

Taking similarly swift action, Redditors took it upon themselves to donate money, through a local toy shop, to Kathleen, her family and other sick children. Donations total $8,230.75 as of this writing. (Other businesses have followed suit, pledging toys and transportation for the donation deliveries.) Go to TreeTownToys.com if you would like to donate, or just marvel at the outpouring of support for this young girl and her family, proving that for all of its capacity for hate-spewing, the Internet isn't just a font of bile.

Tags: 4chan, cyberbullying, facebook, HuntingtonsDisease, JenniferPetkov, KathleenEdward, LauraEdward, reddit, ScottPetkov, top, web

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