Sunday, January 04, 2009

So Sad
Suicide deaths are up in our National Parks.

Although the National Park Service doesn’t consistently track the number of suicides on park properties, at least 33 people are known to have ended their lives in a national park in 2008.

Park Service search-and-rescue reports list 26 suicides (or probably suicides) in 2007, 18 in both 2005 and 2006, and 16 in 2004.

Attempted suicides are much higher.

Twenty-six people attempted suicide at Colorado's National Monument in just the past year. Two were successful.

Patrick Suddath, branch chief of Ranger Operations at Glacier National Park, told the Associated Press that, “It's some place where, toward the end of someone's life, when they're feeling a total sense of despondency, they want to return to a place of natural beauty ... for their final moments.”

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