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‘Tunnel Vision’: Suicide Prevention and Awareness

LACKAWANNA COUNTY, — A Luzerne County community is in mourning after a woman, 31, and her daughter, 5, was found dead inside a car in Bear Creek Township ...

LACKAWANNA COUNTY, -- A Luzerne County community is in mourning after a woman, 31, and her daughter, 5, was found dead inside a car in Bear Creek Township on Friday morning.

State police are calling it a murder-suicide.

"In a rational moment you would say 'why, why, why' but when you're that far into suicide - we call it tunnel vision - you can't think of anything, you can't think of loved ones," Kathy Wallace, Northeast Suicide Prevention Initiative.

Kathy Wallace is the president of the Northeast Suicide Prevention Initiative.

Unfortunately, she's familiar with cases like this one where the parent takes their own life, as well as their child's.

"With the intentions that whatever's making them feel so sad and such despair, they really feel their child would be better off," said Wallace.

Wallace says murder-suicides are usually planned ahead of time but that doesn't mean they can't be stopped.

"Anything that interrupts that thinking and acting on it right way could save a life," said Wallace.

Wallace says the idea that suicides increase around the holidays is actually a myth but she suggests using the holiday as an opportunity to check in on your loved ones.

It was just announced that federal regulators are setting up a new three-digit phone number, just like 9-1-1, to reach a suicide prevention hotline, instead of the current 10-digit number.

"Because people can't remember that, especially when you're in a psychological crisis, so 3 digits would be wonderful," said Wallace.

In the meantime, if you or someone you know is struggling, don't hesitate to call 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

The Northeast Suicide Prevention Initiative is run by volunteers and relies entirely on donations. If you'd like to learn more, you can visit their website.