Join Me in Supporting the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
Suicide is the 11th leading cause of death overall in Pennsylvania. On average, one person dies by suicide every four hours in the state. It is the 2nd leading cause of death for ages 15-34, and the 4th leading cause of death for ages 35-54. I believe suicide can be prevented, and it starts with everyday heroes like us. That's why I am joining the community of 250,000 people walking in hundreds of cities across the country to fight suicide in an Out of the Darkness Walk. Specifically, the Pittsburgh Out of the Darkness Walk is being held at Highmark Stadium at Station Square on Saturday, August 25, 2018. Registration begins at 9am, and the walk begins at 10:30am.
I created a walk team called "Playing Shorthanded". If you're not a hockey fan, playing shorthanded means playing with one less player on the ice for your team. I lost my son, Alex, to suicide on January 15, 2014. He was a huge hockey fan, so I wanted a team name that represented him well. If you would like to help me raise funds, please consider joining our team. If you would like to walk, please pre-register online when you make your donation.
Our team's fundraising goal is $2,500 in honor of Alex's 25th birthday which we celebrated this past December. I am still stunned to this day by the tremendous generosity that has been received in the past four years as our walk team has been one of the top fundraisers each and every year. THANK YOU AGAIN!
I made the personal decision in July 2016 to become committed to the organization and accepted a position on the board and as Treasurer for the Western PA Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. The chapter covers 20 counties in the western part of the state, and is fueled by the efforts of our volunteers to help save lives and support those affected by suicide loss. The counties we cover include Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Clarion, Crawford, Elk, Erie, Fayette, Forest, Greene, Indiana, Jefferson, Lawrence, McKean, Mercer, Warren, Venango, Washington, and Westmoreland. The grassroots work we do focuses on eliminating the loss of life from suicide by delivering innovative prevention programs, educating the public about risk factors and warning signs, raising funds for suicide research and programs, and reaching out to those individuals who have lost someone to suicide.
Our chapter’s been on a strong growth path over the past several years. As a result, and thanks to all the hard work of our volunteers and the generosity of our communities, we are very proud to say that our chapter was recognized and awarded the 2017 Pacesetter Award for Consistent Overall Achievement by a chapter at last year's AFSP Chapter Leadership Conference in Charlotte, NC. In addition, the 2017 Pittsburgh Out of the Darkness Walk was the 12th largest AFSP Community Walk in the country!
I would again appreciate any support that you give me for this worthwhile cause this year. Your tax-deductible contribution will support the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), the leader in the fight against suicide. AFSP funds research, offers educational programs, advocates for public policy, and provides support to those affected by suicide.
Donating online is safe and easy! To make an online donation, click the DONATE button on my fundraising page above. If you would rather donate by check, please make the check payable to AFSP and mail it with an offline donation form to AFSP, 120 Wall Street, 29th FL, NY, NY 10005.