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Pennsylvania Family Mourns Loss, Raises Suicide Awareness

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By Jason Weinstein.
Relatives remember Kalyn Morris as outgoing, talented, and artistic.
"Very bubbly, happy, outgoing. A lot like me, sad inside but happy on the outside," said Kalyn's cousin Kristi Smith.

Morris died by suicide on July 13th. Her family is now looking to raise awareness of suicide. Her grandmother is going to post fliers in the Great Bend/Hallstead area in memory of Kalyn.

"More love you than you know. Death is final," said Kalyn's grandmother Betty Button.

"600 people at her viewing says a lot. That's how many hearts she had touched," said Smith.

Now Kalyn's family is hoping her death can save lives. They say there needs to be an open conversation about suicide. Experts agree.

"I think a lot of people are scared. I think they think if you talk about suicide that people are going to do it. People are going to do it regardless. It's a feeling that you have inside. It's a mental disorder. It's depression. It's not going to go away," said Smith.

"90 percent of people who eventually die by suicide had some type of diagnosable mental health problem, the most frequent of which is depression. We know when you treat these disorders the risk of suicide goes down," said Dr. Brandon Gibb, Binghamton University psychology professor.

Suicide claims twice as many lives as homicide.

"It's the second-leading cause of death of 10- to 14-year-olds. It's the 3rd-leading cause of death of 15- to 24-year-olds," said Gibb.

Smith says Kalyn's death has already changed the mind of one person she met at Kayla's viewing.

"After seeing everything that came after Kalyn's passing they said they wouldn't want to do that to loved ones. Right there that's a life saved," said Smith.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

****In Hallstead, Jason Weinstein, FOX 40 HD News.****