33-year-old Starts Cross-Country Run for Suicide Awareness in Le - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

33-year-old Starts Cross-Country Run for Suicide Awareness in Lewes

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King starts his journey at the beach (Photo: WBOC) King starts his journey at the beach (Photo: WBOC)

LEWES, Del. - Phil King started a cross-country run Monday morning at Cape Henlopen State Park in an effort to raise awareness for suicide prevention.

The 33-year-old from Illinois lost both his mother and best friend to suicide two years ago, and running was his way of grieving.

"With all the running it's kind of a selfish thing just being out there by myself the whole time," he said. "I wanted to come up with a way that all this running could help someone else other than myself."

So he started "Run for Lisa." King will run through 12 states along the northern portion of the American Discovery Trail for roughly 27 weeks.

The run began with King dipping his feet into the ocean.

Through his journey, King met Lori James, who has helped him prepare for the trek.

"I have been touched by suicide in my own life," she said. "I think it touches many lives, and there's a stigma attached to mental illness and suicide and I want to be able to help Phil spread that word and start that conversation across the country."

Beyond raising funds, King plans to meet with people in cities and towns along the way to share his story.

"It's also just about starting the conversation," he explained. "I mean there's a stigma, a negative stigma that goes along with mental health issues, and suicide and maybe something like this will give someone an excuse, or in better words a reason, to talk about things, and get out in the forefront."

To help, you can donate directly to the "Run for Lisa King" page on the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. You can also help raise money for King's journey on his GoFundMe page.

To follow King's run across the country, you can visit his website www.runforlisaking.org and follow along via social media.

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