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OP ED: A Time To Morn, A Time To Speak Up
Many people don’t like to talk about suicide. It’s depressing. It’s messy. It’s uncomfortable. But, worst of all, it forces us to face the sobering truth that there are those for whom death appears more attractive than the life they are currently struggling to exist in.
Almost as if it were just another crazy Simon Roberts publicity stunt from his show, Crazy Ones, the news of Robin Williams’ apparent suicide comes just four weeks shy of World Suicide Prevention Day, September 10th. But, this isn’t a quirky episode that will neatly resolve in 30 minutes on prime time. The pain he felt is real and the loss we’re experiencing is permanent. And, for many, the pain and loss is compounded by the memory of loved ones that have also succumbed to suicide whose name may never grace a headline or get a mention in the evening news.
According to the Center for Disease Control, more than 34,000 people kill themselves each year and over 376,000 are treated in emergency rooms each year for self-inflicted injuries. (http://www.cdc.gov/
WHEELS, a film starring Donavon Thomas, Patrick Hume and Diana Gettinger explores this delicate subject as it follows the unorthodox friendship between two suicidal paraplegic junkies. “Society doesn't like to talk about it,” reflects co-director and star, Donavon Thomas. “It's a topic that gets swept under the rug because of the painful emotions that come with it. My hope is that after people watch the film it will encourage conversations about the tragedy of suicide.”
WHEELS also explores subjects such as mental abuse, trauma, family dysfunction, drug abuse, and domestic violence – all of which can lead to the seduction of death in the face of adversity. Despite the heavy weight of the film’s subject matters, it manages to flawlessly integrate laugh-out-loud humor that creates a welcoming setting to enter into conversations about suicide, its causes, its effects and possible solutions.
WHEELS opens September 12, 2014 in select theaters. For more information, visit www.WHEELStheMovie.com or view the official trailer at http://youtu.be/