National Suicide Prevention Week
While we like to have fun and play along with the random "National Days" that come across the calendar, there are some that hold a more important place in our society.
September 10th is World Suicide Prevention Day. It's a day that, since 2003, is used to provide "worldwide commitment and action to prevent suicides, with various activities around the world."
This past week many observed Suicide Prevention Week. Local organizations like Hudson Valley Center for Veteran Reintegration, MHVA and Vet2Vet have been holding events throughout the area by kayaking and walking hundreds of miles to raise awareness for veteran suicide.
James's Warr;or is another local organization raising awareness for suicide prevention. We spoke to founder Donna Thomas who explained to us the meaning behind the organization.
Thomas tells us she created James's Warr;or's in honor of her son James Thomas who died by suicide in October of 2018. She told us that her family had "no idea that James was suicidal" adding that he was a talented barber at Imperial Barber Shop in Wappingers, who had a beautiful girlfriend, loving family who he spoke to often.
Through their website Donna shares the following:
We never knew what he was struggling with in his own mind. He was a funny, handsome, smart and caring person. He never let on that he thought that suicide was his only resort.
The Thomas family and their team at James's Warr;ors mission is to teach our Hudson Valley community to "talk about mental illness without shame and secrecy."
To honor James Thomas and to raise awareness for suicide prevention, James Warr;ors is in the process of putting together a car show on October 18th, 2020. Due to COVID-19 they are still in the planning process, but you can follow along on their journey on Instagram and Facebook.
If you or someone you know may be struggling with suicidal thoughts options are available to you like the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline online or by phone at 1-800-273-8255.