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Suicide Survivor Voices

February 3, 2014, 6:59 AM by Stephanie Gregory

Suicide Survivor Voices

The mission of the Helpline Center in Sioux Falls is to make lives better by giving support, offering hope and creating connections. Along with community service, they also give suicide and crisis support.  One survivor of suicide knows this first hand.

"I was in shock for probably the first year after he died," Mary Ellen Dirksen said.

Dirksen lost her older brother Rob to suicide nearly a decade ago. After her brother passed away, she says it took her about seven or eight years to get to the point to where she could move forward with her life.

"I started to get involved with the Helpline Center and they have a great suicide support program in place for individuals and families," Dirksen said.

Dirksen found herself with a group of suicide survivors learning how to tell their story and bring light to the issue.

"I specifically got involved with "Survivor Voices" to reach out to other people to raise awareness and help fix the problem in any shape or form has been really healing for me," Dirksen said.

She says most importantly, if she can bring attention to the subject then her job is done.

"Hopefully it gets them thinking that it happens to a wide range of people and teaching them to be aware of their loved ones and teaching them to watch out for warning signs," Dirksen said.

If you need assistant from the Helpline Center, visit or dial 211.

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