Hope and Despair as a New Year Begins | Health

Hope and Despair as a New Year Begins |  Health

A gifted high school student from Mont Vernon, a beloved teacher from Bedford and the son of a US congressman have died by suicide in recent days, leaving their families and loved ones struggling to figure it out.

Unfortunately, such tragedies are not new. Suicide is the second leading cause of death in New Hampshire for people aged 10 to 44, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and the eighth leading cause in the general population.

But the pandemic and the resulting economic crisis have increased anxiety and stress levels for almost everyone. While some have been supported by the rollout of vaccines and the end of a divisive election season, the start of a new year has brought despair to others.

Tommy Raskin, 25, a second-year Harvard Law School student who had battled depression, committed suicide on December 31.

“The last hellish and brutal day of …

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