Hundreds walk to spread suicide awareness - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Hundreds walk to spread suicide awareness

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KENNEWICK, Wash. -- More than 200 family members and supporters showed up Saturday for the 4th Annual Walk About to Talk About Suicide Prevention. The one mile walk aims to raise awareness and to remember those lost.

The Youth Suicide Prevention Program Coordinator, Kristi Haynes says there have been 17 reported suicides in Benton and Franklin counties just this year, and on average two youths a week take their own lives in Washington State.

Angie Shaw was walking for her nephew Christopher Kisner who took his own life in April of 2009. "I'm walking to raise awareness for the kids, that there's always hope and its never too late, and to never give up. He was going into the Air force, and he was 17 years old. And we miss him," says Shaw.

Kevin Templeton was in a big group, all walking for his nephew Austin Katayama who died October 15, 2011. Katayama's family and friends started a foundation for awareness in his name. "we just want people to know that no matter how bad it gets, there's always somebody you could talk to," said Templeton.

The Youth Suicide Prevention Program goes to schools and teaches counselors, students and teachers how to recognize the signs and get help.

In addition, their OUTLoud Program focuses on gay and lesbian youths who have a higher rate of suicide because of bullying.

If you need help please call their 24 hour hotline 1-800-273-TALK (273-8255) or the Gay Lesbian (GLBTQ) helpline is 1-866-4-U-TREVOR 1-866-488-7386.

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