MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Richard Crout always knew he wanted to use his beat box skills to bring people together.
Then, when he learned of kids actually taking their own lives in some cases because of bullying, it hit him in a way he didn't quite expect.
In response to those emotions, Crout decided to start the beat box battle to beat bullies. He's been bringing the battles to schools up and down the Grand Strand, even going as far as Charleston this week.
"I ask, 'How many of you have been bullied here in this room?' and I would say 50 to 70 percent would raise their hands," he said.
From there, Crout asks the kids how being bullied makes them feel.
"They'll answer sad, it breaks my heart, whatever. You don't know what the response will be but they are talking from their hearts," he said.
Crout takes volunteers from the crowd and has them battle it out in true beat box fashion. The winners don't walk away empty handed, instead receiving trophies for their efforts.
For Crout, the battles may seem like fun and games, but the message stands true.
"You know the beat boxing is fun and grabs their attention, but also the message that bullying is a bad thing and we need to stop, you know, all this bullying stuff," he said.
The most gratifying thing for Crout is when he hears from kids after the battles, and they say how much it helped them.
Friday, he will be taking the battles to both Homewood Elementary School and Myrtle Beach Primary School.
For more information on other upcoming beat box battles, head to Crout's Facebook page.