“21 years makes a man full-grown
21 years, what a beautiful loan
21 years, I loved every one
Thank you, Lord, for my beautiful son”
TobyMac has a new song out today about losing his 21 year old son. Take time to watch the video. 21 Years by TobyMac
#800273talk #text741741 #Godhasyouinheaven #Ihaveyouinmyheart
It is a new year. I am so grateful to everyone who has supported us in so many ways during this past year. Your cards, texts, phone calls, messages, and prayers mean so much to us and always lift us up. Thank you for loving on our family so generously. Your financial support of The Carrie Cotter Memorial Fund, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and the National Alliance on Mental Illness also mean a lot to us as we do what we can to reduce the suicide rate and improve mental healthcare. As people set goals and resolutions for the new year, I’d like to give you an update on what we (the Carrying On community) accomplished in 2019. Carrying On raised more than $60,000 for better mental healthcare and suicide prevention in 2019 and I’m so amazed and grateful for You. (Details are below because it got so long and not everyone appreciates numbers like I do🤷🏼♀️, but if you like numbers check it out.) Thank you for your generosity to causes close to my heart. 2020 – Let’s continue to make the world a better place so people don’t take their own lives.
#CarryingOn❤️🎈💚🐻 #800273talk #text741741 #suicideisnotanoption #stayconnectedtoothers #YOUmatter #iloveYou #theworldneedsYOUhere #takecareofYourself #Hope #moveforward #YOUareagiftfromGod #cheeringforClemsonisaNewYearstradition #FaithHopeLove #dojustlyNow #lovemercyNow #walkhumblyNow
As we mourned the loss of James, we asked that donations be made in his memory to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. 23 donations were made that we know of; they did not include all of the amounts donated, but we do know it was well in excess of $26,000. In June, our mighty team of 4 walked 16 miles, overnight, all over the city of Boston and raised $5500 for the AFSP. For World Suicide Prevention Day in September, many of you joined us in releasing a balloon, lighting a candle, sharing our story, and/or donating to The Carrie Cotter Memorial Fund. The total donated to Carrie’s fund in 2019 was $18,300. Expenses imposed on the fund are covered by a generous friend of ours and are not included in that number. $18,200 was donated to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in 2019 and the remaining $100 in donations will be donated to the NSPL in 2020. The current balance in the fund is approximately $410. Many community AFSP Out of the Darkness walks are held in the fall and I’m so grateful to all who walked alongside us in our journey, either with us in Waco, Dallas, or Austin, or in your own hometowns in Colorado, Washington, DC, Missouri, or South Carolina. In these AFSP Out of the Darkness walks our teams raised $10,053. 6 of us also walked in the NAMI walk here in Austin and raised $800 for better mental healthcare for all. You all are amazing. Thank YOU.
This graphic was made by a friend of ours in 2007 for Carrie’s dance recital program.
This graphic was made by a friend of ours in 2007 for Carrie’s dance recital program. I just reread the lyrics from the song that she danced to in this costume and thought I’d share some of them:
Lora by Genie
Eyes so blue
Do you know how much I love you?
A beautiful bird wants to fly
But how can it fly with broken wings
How can it soar above the trees
And how can it glide upon the breeze
With broken wings?
I know a place
Where all pain has gone away
Come with us someday we’ll fly
With heaven’s (perfect) wings!
We will fly with heaven’s (perfect) wings
And we will soar above the trees
And we will glide upon the breeze
With (heaven’s) perfect wings
Eyes so blue
Do you know how much God loves you?”
Now Carrie’a pain has gone away and she has her perfect wings.
#ForeverMyChild ❤️ 🎈#CarryingOnForCarrie #800273TALK #text741741
Year end financial information and More!
2018 donations to the Carrie Cotter Memorial Fund (excluding the donations to cover expenses) totaled $3437. The fund donated $3500 to The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in 2018. The current balance in the fund is $452.61.
We are so grateful for the generosity of our family and friends. We deeply appreciate your donations and the opportunity to help others find Hope and choose to Live. For those they may not know the story, in Carrie’s letter to us she used the phrase, “sleepy baby needs to sleep forever.” When we googled that right after her death (with quotes), we got 1 result – the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. We believe this was her way of asking us to help others, even if she, herself, had lost Hope.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is the nation’s leading organization regarding suicide prevention. This organization runs all of the Out of the Darkness walks across the country. We are also grateful for your support of our family as we participated in the walks at Baylor University, Waco, and Austin. Larry and I also participated in their Overnight walk in Dallas in June where we walked about 17 miles, starting at 8pm. The inaugural walk at Baylor (organized by James) had 149 walkers and raised a total of $6278 (of which our team and a few other special friends raised $4150). Our team at the Austin and Waco walks raised $2165 and we appreciate everyone who supported our efforts by donating or walking in these walks with us. We also really appreciate our family and friends who participated in community walks in their own city in Carrie’s memory in 2018. Thank you for walking for her and raising awareness to inspire others.
As we begin 2019, we plan to participate in these events again, as well as recognize World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10th and remember Carrie on her birthday on April 18th. Stay tuned to see how you can join us. We would also be honored to support you if you choose to walk for Carrie or organize a fundraiser to support an organization for suicide prevention or mental health awareness (AFSP, NAMI, Stop Soldier Suicide, Active Minds, etc). Let me know if you choose to do something. I believe raising awareness for suicide prevention and mental health will reduce the stigma surrounding mental illness and more people will seek help and realize God’s promise, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you Hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11. #ForeverMyChild ❤️ 🎈#CarryingOnForCarrie #stopsuicide#800273TALK #dontloseHope #carriecotterdotcom