He was trying to do the right thing.
But Todd Kennedy is now the former volunteer coach of a Connecticut youth football team, after being fired for teaching his players that bullying is wrong.
Kennedy had previously talked to the team about bullying after reports that some on the team were bullying others. When he heard it had happened again, he asked the boy in question about it in front of the team.
The boy denied the accusation, but Kennedy instructed him to run a couple of laps around the field anyway. The boy did so, and Kennedy complimented him on doing the laps without complaining.
The league board took issue with how Kennedy handled the incident, initially suspending him. One board member asked “why did you feel that you were qualified to handle this bullying incident?”
“I’m like, because I’m a father,” said Kennedy.
He was unceremoniously dumped, without a chance to address or explain to the team. Suddenly, their beloved coach was just gone.
Ages on the team range from 4th to 6th grade.
At least one parent was not happy.
Shannon Riso spoke with News 8 “Bullying is okay – that’s the message I got. That’s why my son is not going to play for them. I want him to be around better role models than that.”
Kennedy took to Facebook to explain himself further:
“I couldn’t sit back and do nothing for the young man who was being bullied. My parents did not raise me like that. They always taught me to help someone in need. There is nothing worse to witness a stronger person pick on a weaker person. I have always stepped in when I have seen things like that. And I always will.”
Want more stories like this? Sign up for our email newsletter.
Watch the report: