ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Recently we have seen some very high-profile suicides, with the deaths of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade.
Last year, NFL star Aaron Hernandez took his life. In 2014, it was legendary comedian and actor Robin Williams.
Those celebrities make national news, but the common person's suicide is just as devastating to their loved ones, even if it doesn't make the news.
All but one state in the country have seen a dramatic increase in suicides in the last decade, with half the states showing an increase over 30%.
Already this year, five people have taken their own lives in Dougherty County. Dougherty County Coroner Michael Fowler says he's seen an increase in suicides.
"It affects everyone, it does not just affect you," said Fowler. "It affects your loved ones, people you work with, the entire community. So suicide is not the answer. Talk to someone, talk to your pastor, talk to some kind of counselor, someone, please."
Fowler said that depression affects everyone differently, but there is always a better way to handle whatever curve ball life has thrown at you.
He said the first step to getting help, is starting the conversation. It's fair to assume almost everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.
Fowler said there is an abundance of resources and community forums to help you or a loved one deal with suicidal thoughts. He has more information at his office, which is located at 225 Pine Avenue in Albany.
You can make a difference and possibly save a life. Suicide is preventable, and recovery is possible.