Suicide Prevention – PaddlePower 2011

Bright and early on August 20, I was up and out the door for PaddlePower, a two day kayak adventure down the Connecticut River to raise money and awareness for Suicide Prevention and West Central Behavioral Health’s emergency services. 
There was hustle and bustle as everyone got registered and psyched up for going down the river.
 There were over 140 paddlers, with approximately 125 boats going down the river. It was a site to be seen!
Paddling Down The River
It was a long day on the river, but a great day on the river.  Everyone arrived at the landing safely, and the shuffling of cars began. Dinner was delicious, the music was fantastic. It was a great night filled with laughing, conversations. The connections that happen at dinner is part of what makes PaddlePower so wonderful.
The next morning started early, and before we knew it we were back on the water heading to the closing ceremony.
James playing the bagpipes
When the bagpipes play at the closing ceremony, I always cry. It moves me to tears. It is a great remembrance for all who have been lost and all who have been saved.

“PADDLEPOWER is a river adventure. Paddlers in canoes and kayaks journey along 25 miles of the beautiful Connecticut River. We supply plenty of rest stops, meals, drinking water, snacks and much fun. You supply your boat, paddles, personal floatation device, tent if you camp, and dedication to this important cause. Our safety staff and volunteers are ready to assist anyone who needs a hand; if you get fatigued, if you develop aches and pains or blisters, if you need water or a snack, we’re ready to help at a moment’s notice. See the registration tab for more details.

Though not often discussed, suicide consistently ranks as 8th among the top ten leading causes of death in our country. For young people below age 35, it is the third leading cause of death. In the US, one person dies by suicide every 16 minutes; about 32,000 people die this way each year. According to national statistics, 1500 people attempt suicide every day, including one out of every 13 high school students.

Suicide is the 9th leading cause of death in New Hampshire and Vermont. In the two states, over 200 people die by suicide each year (about 80% of these are men) and 1000 people will attempt suicide in a year.”

2 thoughts on “Suicide Prevention – PaddlePower 2011

  1. Love this post. The picture of the boats in the water looks so cool!

    I wonder how bad the site of the event got hit by Irene. It's a tough time for Vermont but I've found that Vermonters are hardy and always willing to help each other out!

    I can't wait to finally meet you so soooon this month at the race! 🙂

  2. It is definitely a cool site for sure! I haven't even checked into the Connecticut River to see how it fared. Vermonters are tough. They don't sit around and wait for help, they get it done! My brother is out this week working to help get roads passable.
    I am SO excited to meet you at the end of the month! WOOHOO!!!

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