CARMEL – More than 350 people walked in Putnam County’s Out of the Darkness Community Walk in Carmel on Sunday to raise awareness about suicide.
Chilly, windy conditions didn’t stop this walk for a cause
“One doesn’t have to be a doctor or nurse or scientist, when it comes to suicide prevention,” said Steven Dolce, director of the Hudson Valley Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide. “We can all save lives by understanding what the indications are and by learning the warning signs, we can interrupt that tragic thought.”
Putnam County Commissioner of Social Services and Mental Health Michael Piazza said while people may cry due to the loss of a loved one or friend, “we are creating a community that will become aware of suicide knowing the resources available to avert such a tragedy.”
Alyssa Schmidt of Putnam Valley lost he grandfather to suicide 14 years ago when she was 10. “I was initially mad at him for leaving us. It took me years to realize the reality to forgive and forget.” She said the more people who are aware of suicide and depression and that it is a continuing problem in communities, “the more likely they will seek help. Life is too short to stress over the little stuff.”
Paula Deninger, who lost her husband in 2011, had a simple message – “It something doesn’t seem right, seek help because you never know.” Deninger coordinated the first suicide prevent walk in Putnam county after her husband’s death.