You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Coroner says suicide outreach saves lives

Clark County works to adopt successful area support program.


One local outreach program for suicide survivors is a model for other communities around the nation, including Clark County.

The Logan County LOSS program, or Local Outreach to Survivors of Suicide, has grown quickly, according to Logan-Champaign County Suicide and Prevention Coalition Chairwoman Molly Smith.

“You can actually save lives with a program like this, and as a coroner we don’t save lives,” Logan County Coroner Michael Failor said.

Survivors of suicide are about nine times more likely to commit suicide than others, Failor said.

Each time there is a suicide in Logan County, Failor calls the LOSS team. It sends out survivors of suicide — people who have had a loved one commit suicide — in order to comfort the family in whatever capacity.

“When they look across the room and see the person who has also lost their son, spouse or close friend, that is who they are going to connect with,” Smith said.

“I let them know its OK to grieve. I let them know it is OK to cry. I let them know whatever I can to help them through,” Jeff Cooper said.

Cooper’s son Luke took his own life on Sept. 22, 2011. He left behind a wife, 4-year-old child and three brothers.

“For seven days I couldn’t take a shower without crying like a baby,” Cooper said.

The LOSS team responded to Cooper’s house the day his son died.

“There were three, four or five times I got up and started walking down the hallway to the bedroom. I was done talking. I’d get halfway down there and turn around and talk some more,” Cooper said.

Cooper said the LOSS team was helpful and meant so much to his family.

“It was anybody in the family that needed something or wanted to talk,” Cooper said.

The program was so helpful from the day of the death until the family filed Luke Cooper’s last tax return, that Jeff Cooper has now become a member of the LOSS team.

“I was reflecting a few weeks later and realized there was not any men on the LOSS team. There weren’t any men to come talk to the sons and the dads and the brothers. That kind of struck me,” Cooper said.

Cooper is now vocal about his experience and wants to do anything he can to help educate people about suicide.

Had Cooper lived a few miles away in Champaign County, his experience with the LOSS team could have been different.

Champaign County Coroner Josh Richards currently does not call the LOSS team out to the house of suicide survivors.

“I have been asked about that before, and I’m more than happy to do so,” Richards said, “I don’t always remember.”

He said he believes sometimes it is just too soon for the family, but he does give out literature about programs available to help.

“Families just don’t know what you need at that time. You don’t know what you’re missing either. We think it should be an automatic response,” Smith said.

“I think it should be the family’s decision whether they want the services or not,” Champaign County Commissioner Steve Hess said. “I don’t think it should be his decision.”

The Logan-Champaign County Suicide Prevention Coalition was created in 2005.

A man from Baton Rouge, La., Frank Campbell, started the program in Logan and Champaign County and has visited many times to train the LOSS team.

Now, Logan County is starting to train other counties to create their own LOSS team.

There are currently six other LOSS team programs in Ohio, and dozens more including Clark County are in the process of training LOSS team members.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

Get 'free cruise' robocalls? You could score $500 per call in class-action settlement
Get 'free cruise' robocalls? You could score $500 per call in class-action settlement

Did you fend off robocalls promising a "free cruise" back in 2011? You could end up pocketing $500 per call.
Who won big at the 2017 People's Choice Awards? See the winners list
Who won big at the 2017 People's Choice Awards? See the winners list

Check out the full list of winners below: Favorite movie: "Finding Dory" Favorite movie actor: Ryan Reynolds Favorite movie actress: Jennifer Lawrence Favorite action movie: "Deadpool" Favorite action movie actor: Robert Downey Jr. Favorite action movie actress: Margot Robbie Favorite animated movie...
Help shape Springfield by volunteering to serve on a city board
Help shape Springfield by volunteering to serve on a city board

With Springfield’s incorporation in 1850, city fathers quickly put their most valuable resource — their citizens — into service on a variety of community boards. That practice continues today. More than 100 seats on boards and committees are filled by city residents. The boundaries for some boards expanded with the inception of combined...
Poor Will’s Clark County Almanack: Days longer in deep winter’s 3rd week
Poor Will’s Clark County Almanack: Days longer in deep winter’s 3rd week

A day of thaw. Early this morning crows flew westward over the prairie, cawing in the fresh, temperate air, their voices as always filling the morning with the promise of spring. — August Derleth, A Countryman’s Journal, Jan. 15 The Almanack Horoscope Moon Time: The Tufted Titmouse Moon entered its final quarter on Jan. 19. On the 22nd...
School Notes

CLARK STATE COMMUNITY COLLEGE Local Clark State Community College full-time students recently named to the 2016 fall semester dean’s list include: Joshua Lyons, Megan Miller, Olivia Taylor and Hannah Walls, all of Cable; Eric Schellentrager, of Catawba; Carley Jones, John Murray and Patricia Voisard, all of Cedarville; Keara Nelson, Michaela...
More Stories