SUICIDE PREVENTION: What Parents Need To Know

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Suicide is the second leading cause of death among teenagers in Iowa.  For a parent to lose a child is devastating. But to lose a child to suicide, there are no words. 

Lisa Johnson's son, Kyle, seemed to have it all.  The Southeast Polk senior was the captain of the football team, he had been accepted to Drake and several other colleges.  He was popular and well liked. Not the type of kid we think of when we think teen suicide. 

But Kyle was under a lot of stress. Because of his football injuries--the scholarships weren't coming in like he had planned.

His mother remembers the day the school called and asked her to come in--but wouldn't tell her why.  Kyle had taken his own life. "You just feel that shiver go through you.  You know something's horribly wrong.  Because this isn't the way a spring day in April is supposed to go. So..then I just remember falling to my knees." Johnson says,  "I was more angry with myself.  Because he was my little boy. And I was supposed to take care of him."

The most recent state records show 369-Iowans committed suicide in 2010.   This Sunday marks the fifth annual American Foundation of Suicide Prevention, "Out of the Darkness Walk" to raise awareness about suicide.  The walk takes place at the DMAAC's Ankeny campus, building number seven.  Registration begins at noon and the walk lasts until 4:00 p.m.