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Suicide Prevention


In any given year, over 40,000 Americans die by suicide, almost twice as many as are killed by homicide. The military is not exempt from the problem of suicide.

What do you need to know to effectively raise awareness about suicide prevention?

  • Daily connections can make a big impact on someone’s feeling of loneliness.

  • No special training is needed to show genuine concern for someone in crisis.

  • Suicide prevention is very much a leadership issue, which means leaders should create climates in which Service Members are encouraged to seek the help they need.

  • When members of the military get behavioral health care, they are protected against discrimination by law.

  • There are important signs of suicide risk that can be identified: Hopelessness, Anxiety, Self-destructive behavior (for example, alcohol and drug abuse, as well as talking about death)

  "As part of our key priority to Develop and Care for Airmen and Their Families, we are dedicated to the well-being of our Airmen and their overall physical and psychological health. The tragedy of suicide has the potential to strike across our Air Force and is not limited to Airmen who have deployed or will deploy, nor is it bound by rank, gender, ethnicity, or geography." -- Gen. William M. Fraser III about Air Force suicide programs July 29, 2009 before the U.S. House of Representative Committee on Armed Services Subcommittee on Military Personnel


Areas of a person’s life which capture the totality of how they experience and relate to others and themselves


  • Mental – the ability to effectively cope with unique mental stressors and challenges needed to ensure mission readiness.

  • Physical – the ability to adopt and sustain healthy behaviors needed to enhance health and wellbeing.

  • Social – the ability to engage in healthy social networks that promote overall well-being and optimal performance.

  • Spiritual – the  ability to sustain an individual's sense of wellbeing and  purpose through a set of spiritual beliefs, principles or values


Stories from the field


Four pillars
Suicide Prevention Quote



Personal Stories

Col. Zabokrtsky

Tech. Sgt. Easton

SrA Jackson

CMSgt Baxley

Col. Tatem

Amn Gordon


Ask your wingman

  • Have the courage to ask the question, but stay calm
  • Ask the question directly: Are you thinking of killing yourself?

Care for your wingman

  • Calmly control the situation; do not use force; be safe
  • Actively listen to show understanding and produce relief
  • Remove any means that could be used for self-injury

Escort your wingman

  • Never leave your buddy alone
  • Escort to chain of command, Chaplain, behavioral health professional, or primary care provider
  • Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.(800) 273-8255 (TALK)