Brandon Wilson

Race AFSP 2018


“The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start."
 - John Bingham

I have been given the opportunity to run the Chicago Marathon on October 7th 2018 with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention team. For most of my family and friends you know why this cause resonates with me. For those that don’t I’ll share some of my family’s history. 

When I was nine my Uncle Eric took his own life at the age of 23. At my age I didn’t really know or understand how he died. I just knew that my family was hurting in a bad way. It wasn’t until I grew older through stories my Dad and Grandparents told me that I came to understand the struggle he was going through and how he passed away. 

In 2007, I came to know the pain my family had felt through out those years. I was an adult when my brother Adam took his life at the age of 17. I realized then that our family would never be the same. My brother and I were very close but I still didn’t understand the extent of the pain he was going through and up until his death did I feel he would take his own life. I only know how it feels to be a survivor of someone who has committed suicide. When everything happened I thought if they could have only seen the outpouring of love for them when they were alive, maybe they would have chose to live. 

Life throws things at us all the time that can get us down. Most of us aren’t fortunate enough to go through life happy in all our days. For the majority of us we pull through and find happiness again in a short time. Some aren’t that fortunate, they battle deep depression to the point they lose hope. In Adam and Eric’s case they came from the same loving family as I. The battles they faced in life became so overwhelming that they felt they could no longer deal with them. Sometimes, seeking help is very difficult for people who suffer from deep depression. 

When you lose a love one before you feel it was their time, there will always be a feeling that not all is complete.At life events such as Lori and I’s wedding, the birth of our two daughters, and all family gatherings, you feel like someone is missing. 

My hope is that in sharing my story publicly from a survivor’s perspective, it could give people that suffer from depression the courage to come forward and get the help they need.

It has always been one of my personal goals to run a marathon.So when the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention guaranteed me an entry, I felt as if this was a great purpose to drive me to achieve my goal.If my story resonates with you and you feel compelled to give, I am forever grateful.However, monetary value isn’t the only way you can help.Prayers, words of encouragement, and sharing my story with friends could hopefully make a difference in the lives of others.

I will spend this year training for the Chicago Marathon and running its 26.2 miles for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), which has the mission to save lives and bring hope to those affected by suicide.  The money I raise will help AFSP fund scientific research, educate the public about mood disorders and suicide prevention, promote policies and legislation that impact suicide, and support survivors of suicide loss and people at risk.  Please help me reach my fundraising goal. Any contribution will help the work of AFSP and all donations are 100% tax deductible.  Donating online is safe and easy.  To make an online donation please click the "Donate Now" button at the top of this page.

Thank you for visiting my fundraising page and please wish me luck completing my training and getting to the starting line healthy.  I will take it from there.