SUAMICO, Wis. (WBAY) – The annual suicide prevention motorcycle ride hosted it’s 12th cruise today to raise money for the Family Services’ Crisis Center. The organization in Northeast Wisconsin provides suicide prevention programs and 24/7 on-call professional counselors for those in need.
“I lost a lot of people in my life,” Jeanne Parrett, founder of the Suicide Prevention Ride, shared. The reason she started this ride over a decade ago and hosts it every summer is “to let people know that anxiety and depression is a disease, and that there are people out there to help you.”
The annual suicide prevention ride took off from Shoots Bar in Suamico. The motorcycle riders made some noise on the streets of Oconto Falls, Little Suamico, and Green Bay for those who may feel like they can’t talk about suicide.
Organizers say it’s important to hold these events to let people know suicide hotlines and awareness programs are not only for people struggling with suicidal thoughts, but also for loved ones who are concerned and need advice about how to talk to someone struggling.
“Make the call,” Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin vice-president of programming, Tana Koss, emphasized. “For individuals worried about their loved ones – ask the question. It’s a myth that asking someone if they’re feeling suicidal that it will create the risk. The most important thing is to stay connected to our loved ones and check in more often than regular right now.”
“That chair will never be filled again,” Parrett added. “Those hearts will never be healed because they don’t know why.”
Bikers wore yellow bandanas on the ride to show support for suicide prevention. Plus, revved their engines to applaud, in their own special way, the 21,000 crisis calls and 4,100 face-to-face crisis counseling sessions the center provided in Brown County last year.
“We’re available 24/7,” Koss highlighted. “Our professional crisis counselors are available to answer the phone or meet you in person or at our center anywhere in the community 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
If you’re interested in getting involved, the ride will likely happen again next year on the same Sunday, the week before labor day it has been for the last 12 years.
To visit or get in touch with the Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin you can at their new address 3150 Gershwin Drive, Green Bay or call 920-436-8888. They also answer the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline for Wisconsin: 800-273-TALK. You can also visit the Family Services Crisis Center website by clicking here.
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