Suicide theme strikes close to home for MECLA students

MARSHALL – Outside the Market Street Mall on the sidewalk is a testament to a problem that strikes close to too many people.

Chalked designs, slogans and information on where to get help for depression and suicidal thoughts line the sidewalk in front of the entrance closest to the Marshall East Campus Learning Alternatives school.

The artwork is a project of Melanie Braam’s “TV, Media and You” class and was created as part of a video project.

“We decided we were going to pick a topic and create a public service announcement using an iPad,” Braam said. “They chose depression and suicide.”

Out of the six students in Braam’s class, all said they had known a suicide, five of them that of a relative or close friend.

“We chose it because it’s a huge problem, and everyone thinks it’s an answer,” said Marissa West.

The students started work Monday. When the video footage is complete they will edit it with iMovie software. They hope the video will get people to open up about the problem.

“Nobody talks about it,” said Karla Reyes.

It’s hard to talk about it, hard to be a teenager, but it’s harder to live with the suicide of someone close.

“It isn’t something somebody wants to experience,” said Sasha Esquivel, who lost a close friend to suicide. “It’s been three years since I experienced it, and it’s still hard to cope with.”