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Event Draws Attention To Suicides On Reservations

December 22, 2012, 1:10 PM

RAPID CITY, SD -

Dozens of people hoping to draw attention to the high suicide rate on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation gathered for a candlelight observance.

The Friday night event at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center corresponded with the Lakota Nation Invitational tournament.

Jennifer Mesteth says she knows the pain of suicide firsthand. Her daughter once attempted.

She works for the Emergency Youth Shelter on the reservation, which gives refuge to Native American boys and girls between 12 and 17 years old.

In some parts of the United States, suicide among Native American youths is nine to 19 times as frequent as among non-Native youths.

Nineteen-year-old Annie Richards of Kyle says people need to talk more to Native American children having problems.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
A misspelling was corrected in this story.

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