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Dese Rae's Story

Dese’Rae Stage is an artist, mom, and suicide education activist. She created Live Through This (livethroughthis.org), a multimedia storytelling series that aims to reduce prejudice and discrimination against suicide attempt survivors. Live Through This reminds us that suicide is a human issue by elevating and amplifying survivors’ voices through raw, honest stories of survival, and pairing them with portraits—putting faces and names to the statistics that have been the only representation of attempt survivors in the past. Dese’Rae has received awards for her work, including the SAMHSAVoice Award, the SXSWCommunity Service Award, Investigation Discovery’s Inspire a Difference Everyday Hero Award, and the American Association of Suicidology’s inaugural Transforming Lived Experience Award. Live Through This has received media coverage from the New York Times, Associated Press, NPR, CBS Evening News, and more. Dese’Rae is featured in a documentary about suicide prevention advocates called “The S Word,” currently screening nationwide.

Earl's Story

Earl Granville is a nine year veteran under the Pennsylvania Army National Guard as an infantryman. During his time in the service, Granville served in support of Operation Joint Forge in Bosnia, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. In the summer of 2008 while on a patrol in Zormat, Afghanistan, his vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb which resulted in the amputation of his left leg through the knee. His comrades, Specialist Derek Holland of Wind Gap, Pennsylvania and Major Scott Hagerty of Stillwater, Oklahoma were killed in action. After his injury, Earl found himself competing in many sports adapting to his injury. He is a Team Member for the non-profit Operation Enduring Warrior, and is the President of Partnerships of the veteran found apparel line, Oscar Mike. Both organizations have a mission to keep our disabled veterans continuing to live an active lifestyle after their respected injuries. Earl also speaks publicly about the importance of finding help in battling mental adversity after the passing of his twin brother, Staff Sergeant Joseph Granville, who took his own life December of 2010 while still on Active Duty. Earl is enrolled at the University of Scranton for Counseling & Human Services. He medically retired from the army holding the rank of Staff Sergeant earning some military awards such as the Combat Infantryman Badge, Bronze Star and Purple Heart.

Amanda's Story

Amanda Blue is the Outreach Manager for the College of Health Sciences at West Chester University and the Co-Chair of the Chester County Suicide Prevention Task Force.

After experiencing the loss of her husband to suicide in 2008, she became an active participant on the WCU Mental Health Awareness Committee organizing events, walks, and presentations for the campus. Following the loss of her husband by just four years, Amanda lost her 14 year old son to suicide. With increasing passion and commitment, Amanda has worked in suicide prevention through speaking, advocacy, and education. She has been an advisor to the student Active Minds Chapter, and created a campus wide program called, “Take a Mental Health Day.” This first all-campus mental health event provides an opportunity for the campus community to engage in interactive presentations regarding mental health. “Take A Mental Health Day” has become an annual event at WCU.

As a certified Mental Health First Aid instructor and program administrator on the WCU campus, Amanda has trained over 800 people. In addition, she is a certified QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer Suicide Prevention Training) Instructor. Amanda completed her Master’s degree in Public Health in 2018 with the intention to continue her work in awareness and education surrounding the public health crisis that suicide has become.

Hannah's Story

Hannah Metzger is a two-time suicide loss survivor, a person who struggles with mental health, and a mental health advocate. She graduated from West Chester University with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and began exploring what she could do to further the advocate for mental health awareness and suicide prevention. Since then, she has worked closely with Aevidum, the Chester County Suicide Prevention Task Force, and Prevent Suicide PA, to support their programming in any manner that she is able. Currently, Hannah is working as a Clinical Research Coordinator at Thomas Jefferson University on a grant to expand PA call response efforts for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Hannah and Amanda's Story