Local fundraiser hopes to bring awareness to suicide prevention - Wandtv.com, NewsCenter17, StormCenter17, Central Illinois News-

Local fundraiser hopes to bring awareness to suicide prevention

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At just over 6 feet Randy Chaney's daughter still calls him a gentle giant.

"Sweetest, nicest person you could ever imagine," said Amber Chaney Haddock, Randy's daughter.

On February 29, 2012, Chaney took his own life. Just more than a year later, his family chose to honor him the best way they know how.

"He loved to ride," she said. "That's why we decided to do our first annual ride for randy fundraiser."

A ride along in honor of her father. Starting at his favorite bike shop and ending at his favorite hangout.

"He would be excited that we're all getting together riding motorcycles and going to a place that he enjoyed," Haddock said.

But it's more then just remembering Chaney. It's about raising awareness for suicide prevention. Because when Chaney reached out for help, some family members didn't know what to do.

"If I would have know that that was gonna happen you know I could have went to somebody and shout it out but I didn't know who to go to," said brother-in-law Kevin Davis.

The Chaney family isn't alone. Other people at Saturday's charity event understand the feeling of not knowing what to do or how to help in these situations.

"Suicide is a temporary solution to a long term problem," said Wendi McKenzie. "Suicide is not the answer I lost my brother to suicide four years ago. And life is worth living. And there is help out there.

McKenzie is a board member of Suicide Prevention Services of America.  She now knows there is help out there. But four years ago it was different.

"I wish I would have pushed harder to get him help," McKenzie. "I wish I just did not gave up on him because he had given up on himself."

McKenzie says to be aware of signs like depression, educate yourself and others about mental illness and to be a good listener.

Ride for Randy raised a little over $1,400.00.  All of that money will go to Suicide Prevention Services of America.

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