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Suicide Prevention Day Article

By: Heather Grinkley, Kyra Dillard

Suicide Prevention Day Speaker Comes To Bethany College!

     Have you or anyone that you know ever felt alone, out of place or lost? “To Write Love on Her Arms,” is an inspirational non-profit organization dedicated to helping people who struggle with depression, addiction, suicidal thoughts, and self-injury.

      On September 10, 2014 at 7pm. in the Renner Art Gallery, an audience of Bethany College students and faculty listened to professional speaker, Denny Kolsch.  He is a representative of “To Write Love on Her Arms” and addressed the audience about matters such as the importance of the organization and what it stands for. Denny talked about his struggles with depression, addiction and a panic disorder that he has been suffering from.

       The woman who became an inspiration for this organization is Renee, who at the time was a lost 19 year old living in Orlando, Florida. She had attempted suicide a few times, battled depression, was an addict and often looked at herself as a failure. She was surrounded by a negative environment that was notorious for dealing drugs and inhabited by drug addicts.

       Renee was ashamed of what she had become and the harm that she had inflicted on her body. She actively sought the appropriate help and guidance in order to heal her physical and emotional wounds. Her friend Jamie had convinced her to go to the treatment center, the only problem is that it was very expensive. Jamie came up with a great idea to start making t-shirts and sell them in order to help her pay for the treatment centers expenses.

       Jamie was so moved by Renee’s story that he obtained her permission to write a story about it entitled “To Write Love on Her Arms.” Jamie went on warp tours and went on stage for about five minutes to talk to the audience about Renee’s story, in hopes that people will support her and help others who suffer from depression.

       Denny stood bravely in front of many students, faculty members and local residents to share his story which is similar to Renee’s story. He shared that he also struggled with depression and addiction and was in denial that he needed help, but then became open to the thought of getting better.

       He has now been sober for eleven years and visits various colleges to talk about his struggles and to discuss the “To Write Love on Her Arms” organization with the goal of reaching people who may be struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts. Depression is the leading cause of suicide in the United States and it is important to reach out to those who are struggling with depression.

     Be the one to save a life, speak up and let them know that they are never alone. If you know someone who suffers from suicidal thoughts, and depression please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit the website Even if you feel like all hope is lost, there is always still a reason to live. 




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