The award was given by the New England Newspaper & Press Association and I was one of four finalists for all health stories in New England daily newspapers under a circulation of 30,000.
I try to keep my personal blog and professional writing separate but under the circumstances I feel comfortable sharing links to the series this time.
January 25: The numbers on my area's high suicide rate, which mysteriously exceeds demographic norms
March 9: Why men die from suicide at a higher rate
March 28: Interview with Kevin Hines, author who survived jump off Golden Gate Bridge
March 30: Talked to a mother who lost her teen son to suicide and wrote about teen suicide issues
April 27: Spoke to a veteran who survived a suicide attempt and touched on veteran suicides
June 17: Interviewed experts about suicide among the elderly
July 6: Details of evidence-based suicide prevention programs
July 30: Spoke to experts about how the media fails in its suicide reporting
This was a difficult issue to cover, and emotionally taxing. I was already proud of what I created here, and while the award is nice to have, it didn't mean as much as the positive responses I got from readers who had suffered a tragedy because of suicide.
This is a serious problem that thrives on silence. I hope I've inspired people to talk about it instead of staying quiet because it's an uncomfortable subject.