My Uncle: Colton John Broussard
April 10, 1952-January 3, 1981
When I asked my mother if I could write about my Uncle Colton’s suicide because I thought it could help other families, I wasn’t sure what she would say. I thought she would at least have to think about opening up so publicly about her brother’s death.
She immediately said yes. NO hesitation.
Too many families, particularly black families, don’t speak of mental illness, depression or suicide and it is costing lives. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death. The CDC says suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death for black men 15-24.
The deeply personal conversation my mother, father and I had about my uncle’s suicide appeared here on HLN, as did a powerful conversation I had with parents who lost their sons to suicide.
We must ALL have these conversations. There is NO shame in mental illness or depression. NONE.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255