Walk aims to bring suicide 'Out of the Darkness'

Despite being the 10th leading cause of death, suicide is rarely talked about or addressed in society.

On Saturday, a group of students hosted the Out of the Darkness Walk to raise suicide awareness.

"Suicide is rarely talked about because there's this stigma around it and it's hard to understand," sophomore Lea Norwood said. "Really, [suicide] is about people who tried but didn't know how to get help."

Before the actual walk, guest speaker Brian Shivers, youth program director of American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, talked about the negative stigmas surrounding suicide and the lack of attention it receives.

The event also included two student speakers. Junior Tyler Fox has lost seven people to suicide since seventh grade and has learned to cope with the loss through resources on campus.

"Tyler is so spirited, you have to smile when he talks. He gave statistics and proves we can move and there's real hope to move on," Norwood said.

Sophomore Carmen Diaz was the other student speaker and she talked about the losses of her father in 2002, uncle in 2007 and some classmates.

"Suicide is a huge thing in Carmen's life, but she can still smile and wants to save people," Norwood said.

Through these losses to suicide, Diaz is becoming an advocate of suicide prevention and awareness.

"[Being an advocate] really helps me feel closer to my dad. Pretty much the whole reason I do this is because I don't want people to go through what I did when I lost my dad. This is my passion and it makes me feel really good," Diaz said.

Following the speakers, everyone who registered for the event walked three miles around campus.

The founder of the walk at Ball State, sophomore Chloe Brattain, lost her brother to suicide during her freshman year of high school. Following the loss, Brattain's mother, Lisa Brattain, began AFSP's Indianapolis branch and started the Indianapolis Out of the Darkness Community Walk in September.

When Brattain came to Ball State last year, she saw an opportunity to bring the walk here.

In its second year, the walk topped last year's attendance with 110 people and raised over $3,000, which will benefit the AFSP.

"We have a lot of work to do still," Diaz said. 


More from The Daily

Loading Recent Classifieds...