On Day 10 of my 22 days, 22 pushups a day challenge to raise awareness for Veterans’ Suicide, I was joined at the City of Oakley Veterans Memorial Park by Vanessa Perry, Oakley City Councilmember, Board member of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and Chair of the Oakley “Out of the Darkness” walk. Through her efforts and those of her colleagues on the “Out of the Darkness” Planning Committee, their inaugural walk last year raised over $40K to fund research to improve our understanding of suicide and to find ways to prevent it. Tragically, in the U.S., a person dies by suicide every 13.3 minutes, claiming more than 39,500 lives each year. On average, 22 veterans commit suicide each day. One life lost to suicide is one too many. We need to work together to support the efforts of organizations like the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to create a culture that’s smart about mental health and that provides support for those affected by suicide.
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