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Man runs 48 miles in 48 hours for suicide prevention

Updated: Apr. 23, 2021 at 7:29 PM CDT
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JENNINGS, La. (KPLC) - A Jennings man is spreading awareness by partnering with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention for Run to Save Lives.

He started running at 4 p.m. Friday and will make his last run at 3 p.m. Sunday.

He will be running 1 mile every hour for 48 hours. He said that he feels called to bring awareness to mental health battles, because he’s been there before.

“You’re not alone in this struggle,” Reed said. “Twenty years ago, I battled with depression and thought of suicide. I was one of the lucky ones that - that didn’t take my life.”

He has now teamed up with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention for the Run to Save Lives event.

“Every hour, on the hour, I’ll take off and run a mile.”

He said he hopes his 48 miles in 48 hours pursuit can bring help those who are struggling and raise money for AFSP.

“We can turn that pain into some kind of purpose and give God glory,” said Sheila Reed, Ralph’s wife.

She said that when Ralph runs, he’s able to connect with God and come back with a fresh outlook on life.

“I found God and things changed,” Ralph said. “Until you actually get yourself to that state of mind, you don’t realize what people go through.”

Leaning on God, surrounding himself with loved ones and running helped him overcome his darkness.

“In this moment, it does feel like a dark place, and I’m going to sit here with you in that dark place, until the light comes in,” said Shelia.

She says to anyone with a loved one who is suffering depression to always validate their feelings of pain.

Ralph said that he will still run in the rain because it’s a lot like life - you have to push through those hard times. Though in the case of lightning and more server weather he will continue his run indoors by treadmill.

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