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Published September 12, 2013, 03:01 PM

Altru, TEARS organize walk for suicide prevention

September is suicide prevention month in North Dakota, and local organizations are taking action to raise awareness. Altru is hosting a walk for suicide prevention on Sunday, and partnering with TEARS, which stands for Together We Educate About the Realities of Suicide.

By: Cynthia Johnson, WDAZ

September is suicide prevention month in North Dakota, and local organizations are taking action to raise awareness. Altru is hosting a walk for suicide prevention on Sunday, and partnering with TEARS, which stands for Together We Educate About the Realities of Suicide.

This Sunday's walk will be from one to four at Lincoln Park in Grand Forks. Before the walk, speakers will give a presentation on suicide awareness. According to the State Department of Health, North Dakota ranks fourteenth in the nation for its rate of suicide deaths. In 2012, 107 North Dakotans died as a result of suicide. Sandy Kovar is a co-founder of TEARS. She lost her 18-year-old son, Michael Bullinger to suicide ten years ago. Michael graduated from Red River high School in 2003. Sandy says the event will raise awareness and support those who have lost someone to suicide.

"We're the ones who have to live with that suicide loss and I think it's supportive of those people that they're not shunned and people turn away because they did lose someone to suicide so we're hoping to decrease that stigma," Kovar said.

Participants can either register ahead of time here on the Altru website


, or the day of the event. All proceeds go toward future educational events on suicide prevention in the area.

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