BRISTOL, Va. - 2012 was a record high year for the number of suicides among active and non active military personnel.
More service members died from their own will, than those fighting in combat.
According to the Pentagon the Army had the highest number of suicides on record at 182, but the Marine Corps had the largest percentage increase, up 50%, 48. The Air Force recorded 59 suicides and the Navy had 60.
There are several organizations trying to eliminate this statistic, one of them, The Crisis Center in Bristol.
Executive Director Katherine Campbell says she has seen an increase in veteran family members calling for help, "We not only council the family members calling, seeking resources, but we know how to talk to loved ones during suicide."
Campbell says they listen and then help point those in crisis in the right direction, "If a person is there with a weapon you try to work to disarm their access in whatever creative way you can think of."
"While there are specific experiences that a veteran has gone through that is going to influence their crisis it can be very similar to a woman who is experiencing domestic violence because that household is very similar to a war zone," said Campbell.
The Crisis Center is one of many organizations working to prevent veteran suicide, and their help is just a phone call away.
If you're a veteran in need of help, call 800-273-8255. Then press one. This connects to a specific hotline for veterans.
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