By: Rachel DeGrane

Survivors of Suicide Loss Day (SOS Day) is a day where friends and families who have lost someone to suicide can come together to remind each other that they are not alone and share ways to cope with the loss. In 1999 Senator Harry Reid introduced a resolution to the Senate which led to the creation of International SOS Day. Reid himself was a survivor of his father’s suicide.

Congress decided to have SOS day fall on the Sunday before American Thanksgiving, which would be November 23rd this year. They selected this day with the knowledge that the holiday season can be a difficult time for suicide loss survivors so this would give them extra encouragement before heading into this difficult season.

Event takes place at NAMI
620 Dakota Street in Crystal Lake

Each year on SOS day the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention (AFSP) helps put on multiple events all over the country; both big and small. AFSP not only helps coordinate events in the United States, but all over the world! While each event is made up of mostly different programs, every event is shown a documentary created by AFSP to share a message of connection, growth and resilience.

One of this year’s local events, is organized by members of McHenry County’s National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), the McHenry County Suicide Prevention Task Force, and the McHenry County Mental Health Board, and will take place from 12-3pm at NAMI: 620 Dakota St. in Crystal Lake.

We invite anyone and everyone who is able to attend and honor those who have lost their lives to suicide as well as those they have left behind. If you are interested in attending McHenry County’s event, please contact JoyAnn at

Also, on November 23rd from 4:00pm – 6:00pm the AFSP is hosting an event in Chicago for survivors of suicide loss. If you would like more information on this event or would like to register for it here is the link:

If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression or suicidal thoughts please remember you are not alone. Owens Counseling has multiple therapists trained in working with those struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts.

If you would like more information of want to make an appointment please feel free to call our office at 847.854.4333.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Crisis Text Line: text “TALK” to 741741