Monday, September 24, 2012

OC Residents Step Out For a Good Cause

The Out of the Darkness Community Walk in Irvine raised
$30,000 for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
this past Saturday (image via OC Register)
 A few weeks ago, I read about Michele A. McKay, who walked out of her Lake Forest home at 10 o'clock on Labor Day without taking her wallet, credit cards or cell phone.

Her family was worried because they knew she had been despondent over finance and health troubles. Less than a week later she was found beneath the Santa Margarita Parkway Bridge. It was later determined she had jumped to her death.

Two days before she went missing, family and friends buried Aliso Viejo resident Adam Razani, a former U.S. Air Force technician who took his life and was found in Trabuco Canyon hours after he left troubling posts on his Facebook page.

Maybe it's because I'm following the local news more closely for this blog, but it seems like a lot of suicides have happened over the summer. There's the local transient who hanged himself a behind a store in Laguna Niguel, the 18-year-old who stepped in front of the Metrolink train in Tustin, and the 26-year-old Buena Park resident who was also hit by a train in an apparent suicide.

But from darkness emerges hope, as was demonstrated on Saturday with the Out of the Darkness Community Walk. Held at the Bill Barber Memorial Park in Irvine, a crowd of 500 came together to raise $30,000 for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Grandmothers walked for their grandchildren, mothers for their sons, friends for their friends, and some who simply wanted to raise awareness to the importance of suicide prevention.

Let's hope that the stigma surrounding suicide is one day lifted and that another life is not lost to something as preventable as this heartbreaking issue.

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