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London man riding nearly 2,000km for suicide awareness
Published Wednesday, May 29, 2019 4:05PM EDT
On the outside, Kate Harris' father says she was strong, happy and generous.
"We knew that Kate did suffer from depression, but we thought it was under control," says Doug Harris. "We had no idea how much she was suffering privately."
Nearly three years ago, the 32-year-old full-time army reservist took her own life.
Now, in her honour, her father is setting out on a three-week, 2,200 kilometre ride from his hometown of London, to Halifax - where his daughter was stationed.
"When I leave Thursday it will be the longest ride i've ever done. I'm riding solo to Montreal where my wife will meet up with me and tag along for the remainder of the trip. The reason is to raise money funds for the Zero Suicide initiative."
Zero Suicide, which was launched in 2016, provides patients with a coping plan. It gives those at risk options of who to call and what actions to avoid doing.
"What we recently rolled out is that within 24 hours of discharge, they are given a phone call to make sure you are okay," says Dr. Sandra Northcott of Parkwood Institute.
Harris says his campaign has set a goal of $25,000, and just before he embarks, the amount is already close to $10,000.
He adds that preparing for this journey has been a emotional roller coaster, but he is pushed by those who have been donated to his cause.
"We've been getting phone calls and texts from people we don't even know, but who were touched by the story. That's what its all about. Hopefully we can make a change."
To donate or to follow the journey log on to https://fortheloveofkateiride.ca/