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"We don't want any other family to feel like we feel" - One local father shares his son's story during National Suicide Prevention Month

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FARMERSBURG, Ind. (WTHI) - Each year, tens of thousands of Americans die by suicide in the United States.

In recent years, it's become more common, especially among young people.

Now, one local father is stepping up to raise awareness and spread the message of hope during Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month.

Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month

"He just loved to smile, and he loved to have fun," Mike Frey, a local father who lost his son to suicide, said.

Cade Frey was a very bright 18-year-old with a big future ahead of him. He was captain of his soccer team, a very successful Motocross racer, and an incredible friend. But in one tragic moment, his life was taken away too soon.

"My son Cade who was 18-years-old passed away from suicide at this location here," he said.

His father, Mike, says this was something very unexpected as Cade was known as a very positive and happy guy.

"Nothing at all. There were no signs. I don't believe his friends saw any signs or his mother. There were no signs at all that there were any issues," he said.

Now, he can't do what a father always wants to see, watching his son grow up.

"This next March would be his 21st birthday," he said. "That's going to be very tough be tough for me because every father wants to take their son out for their first drink. It's the what would it be - What would happen right now - What would he be doing right now? That's the hardest part." 

In recent years, local health experts say suicide is becoming more of an issue, especially among young people.

According to the CDC and the National Institute of Mental Health, suicide was one of the top three causes of death among people ages 10 to 34.

"We've seen a dramatic increase in our children," Art Fuller, the Chief Human Services Officer at the Hamilton Center," said. "It's that feeling of isolation that leads to there's no other way out or this is the end of the road and those thoughts kind of continue to build on themselves."

They say one of the best things to do is to know there is always support out there for you and that what you may be feeling is only temporary.

"Nobody should be afraid to simply ask for help because once you reduce that stigma, there will be more people out there than you imagine, that are willing to step up and say 'Hey, how can I help out," Fuller said.

Now to help others, Mike Frey is using his son's story to make a difference.

He's speaking at local schools helping other kids who may be struggling.

"We don't want any other family to feel like we feel," Frey said. "If we can make a difference with one child, that is great for us."

If you or someone you know is struggling, there is always help and support available for you. For the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, call 988.

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