May 19 - May 21
Veteran suicides have become an epidemic of unimaginable proportions. At least 22 veterans commit suicide every day – that’s more than 8,000 deaths every year. Why? Often it’s because the camaraderie and sense of brotherhood that our heroes experienced while in service to their country is missing in civilian life. Unable or unwilling to share feelings and emotions that only other veterans can truly understand, these heroes refuse to burden their families. As a result, they frequently find themselves in a crisis mode that often ends in suicide. This travesty cannot continue. An alliance of local grassroots’ non-profit organizations has come together to not only heighten awareness about this problem, but also be part of the solution by supporting Spartan Weekend. Spartan Weekend is a support event where veterans, first responders and fire fighters participate in a series of team building activities. Those activities encourage and promote the establishment of Battle Buddy relationships. The weekend event culminates in a Spartan Sword ceremony. Forged from steel that was recovered from the World Trade Center and the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy, the Spartan Sword is used as a symbol of strength and brotherhood as veterans make the following pledge: “I will not take my own life by my own hand until I talk to my battle buddy first. My mission is to find a mission to help my warfighter family.” Together, we can help save lives and support those who have served our country and given so much to protect our freedom. We hope that you will join us for this life changing event.