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Bismarck motorcycle group riding across the country to promote suicide awareness

Published: Jun. 22, 2022 at 7:40 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Nearly everybody has been affected by suicide or knows someone who has, and a group in Bismarck is hoping to help people around the country destigmatize it.

The wall at the Brother’s Keepers Motorcycle Club is full of memories, and another memory will be added to the wall soon.

”It’s a motorcycle ride that’s four days, 1,700 miles long, that we’re going to run from the Canadian border to the Mexican border straight across the heartland of the United States,” said Mike Maples, co-founder of the Wish You Were Here Ride.

The primary goal of the Wish You Were Here Ride is to destigmatize the topic of suicide.

”They’ll talk all day long about a grandmother who passed away at 97 years old, lived a long and happy life, whereas somebody who’s younger that took their own life. It’s not a natural death, so people don’t feel comfortable talking about it,” said Maples.

Coincidentally, the ride comes as the country is systematically switching over to ‘988′ as the Suicide Prevention Hotline number.

”The goal is to have someone to answer, call, chat, and text from the number, but then also to provide a linkage of resources for that person,” said Moriah Opp, suicide prevention administrator for the Department of Human Services.

Maples hopes to provide people he meets on the ride with resources that might help them or their loved ones.

The ride begins July 2. For more information about the ride and to learn about the loved ones they’re riding for, visit wishyouwerehereride.com.

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