Each ride-day the Light the Trail team will #Ride4 a victim of suicide to honor and celebrate their life, and to further healthy conversation about this important topic.

November 10th, 2017: #Ride4 Dayna Lynne Dempsey (by Lezlie Dempsey Culver)

Tell us about them…

The first thing that comes to mind is her brilliance! My sister dropped out of high school, got her GED, earned her BA in Accounting, was a CPA, college professor, received her Master’s in Healthcare Administration, a Master’s in Gerontology and attempted to pursue a Bachelor’s in Funeral Education but soon realized (due to her small stature) she could not move the bodies and also learned she was allergic to formaldehyde! She took a break from accounting to travel the country as a Delta Flight Attendant. She loved the travel but quickly realized she really did not like the passengers! Overall, she said she just did not like people! For years before her death she did not have a TV and read constantly. She truly loved me, Jett, Matt, Madalene and Chris…and of course David. She studied mental illness like she pursued all her degrees. She fought hard against her disease but did not win the battle.

How has your perspective of depression and suicide shifted over time?

When my sister took her life I had already gotten very involved in mental health and suicide awareness because of my mother’s death. The difference was the outpouring of love and support I felt when my sister died vs my mom. The stigma of this type of death has gotten better but we still have a way to go…

A small special way we can celebrate them on the road?

Maybe sprinkle some glitter along the way…Dayna loved “fairy dust!”

Is there a particular favorite song or band of theirs, or one you remember them by?

Landslide by Fleetwood Mac

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