A special community meeting was held in Lamar County Thursday to address suicide awareness and prevention.
Several speakers and an expert panel shared personal stories and answered questions from parents and community members.
During the meeting, Andy Taggart shared the emotional story of his son’s suicide and how it impacted his life.
Superintendent Tess Smith said Lamar County has had nine confirmed suicide cases over the last three years, and that number is troubling to officials.
Smith and other school officials formed a Suicide Prevention Committee to address this issue during the spring.
Smith said they are working hard to educate their faculty and staff on warnings signs to look for in students in hopes of preventing other cases.
“A lot of people don't want to talk about suicide and it’s time in Lamar County that we talk about suicide, because I don't want another one,” Smith explained.
According to the Lamar County Sheriff’s Department, they average about one suicide call or attempt every two days in Lamar County.