Suicide Prevention Summit in La Crosse raises awareness of issue

Published On: Sep 17 2013 11:36:34 PM CDT   Updated On: Sep 18 2013 06:40:23 AM CDT

It's a topic that's difficult to talk about, but people who have lost a loved one to suicide are making themselves heard.

The La Crosse Area Suicide Prevention Initiative once again organized a summit on the topic.

They say more than 600 people in Wisconsin take their own lives every year.

A keynote speaker who's sister committed suicide six years ago says events like this are a great way to start conversations on the issue. "We don't want it to be hush-hush, we want it definitely to be out there so that people understand the warning signs, are more educated in mental illness, what suicide is, what are some signs and symptoms, things like that, and as a family member, it's great to see the support of the community," said Sam Mahr.

The summit starts Wednesday at 8:30 at the La Crosse Center. It costs $75.