Boy Scout raises aware­ness of sui­cide

Af­ter per­sonal loss, Stafford teen hopes ef­fort can help oth­ers

Richmond Times-Dispatch Weekend - - Virginia - BY CATHY DYSON The Free Lance-Star

STAFFORD — Travis Wolfe hasn’t been able to talk about that day, four sum­mers ago, when his fa­ther died by sui­cide — and changed the lives of ev­ery­one around him.

Travis was 13 at the time, and it has just been too painful to put the loss into words.

“I’ve talked about it to let peo­ple know it hap­pened, but never in-depth,” he said.

Yet, when the 17-year-old con­sid­ered what to do for his Ea­gle Scout project, his thoughts went to the most aw­ful day of his life — and how he might help some­one else avoid that agony.

His dad, Richard Allen “Rick” Wolfe, spent a life­time strug­gling with de­pres­sion, and Travis wanted to let oth­ers in that sit­u­a­tion know “there’s an­other way be­sides tak­ing their life.”

The teenager is spon­sor­ing a Sui­cide Aware­ness/Pre­ven­tion Walk on Satur­day at North Stafford High School, near the same ground where he has played foot­ball and lacrosse. The event starts at 10 a.m. with a flag cer­e­mony by the school’s JROTC and in­cludes mu­sic by Tyler Plazio from the band Sol­diers of Sub­ur­bia at 11 a.m.

Travis hopes sev­eral hun­dred peo­ple at­tend.

“If we can reach one per­son, it will be worth it,” said his mother, Mon­ica.

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