Warr;or Walk for Hope Held for Area Man Who Died by Suicide
The walk started in memory of Tyler Barger, a 2009 Karns City graduate. He was a happy, smart, and friendly person who would go out of his way to help others. Unfortunately, Tyler took his own life in March of 2018, and in September of 2019, the first Warr;or Walk was held in his honor.
The family of Tyler wanted to bring everyone together to raise awareness of suicide and to show support for each other. Honoring Tyler by hosting a Memorial Walk and Chinese Auction was their perfect way of doing so.
“We want to celebrate Tyler’s life and share our journey. The pain in our story has a purpose,” mother of Tyler Barger, Marta, said. “We hope to keep another family from suffering a devastating loss and help those having feelings of suicide realized they are loved, valued, and they have a purpose.”
Participants were able to order banners for loved ones that they have lost to suicide. The banners were hung around the track on the “Memorial Wall.” After the walk, those who purchased banners were able to take them home or leave them for the next year.
“I love being able to gather with friends and family to bring awareness to suicide and help raise money to educate and assist others that have been impacted by suicide,” said Lexis Twentier, cousin of Tyler Barger. “It turned out to be a nice afternoon for the walk, and I’m so happy they were able to raise so much money for a cause so near and dear to my heart.”
This year, participants were limited to 250 at the walk, but there were more than 250 people registered with some completing their walk “virtually.”
Friend of Tyler, Cody Williams, participated in a memorial golf outing on Saturday, as well as the walk on Sunday. He was excited to see the community come together with the Barger family to raise awareness and money for a scholarship in Tyler’s name, as well as a donation to a local organization.
“Between the two events, we were able to raise over $20,000. It truly shows the love this community has for the Barger family,” said Williams.
Even though COVID-19 limited the number of participants at the walk, it did not put a limit on the donations received throughout the event.
This year, the total amount of money raised from the Warr;or Walk exceeded $12,000, reaching $12,345.
The money raised from the walk is donated to iRise Leadership Institute. iRise was founded in April of 2016 by Kristie Knights, a licensed psychotherapist. iRise is a non-profit organization that offers an abundance of resources for those impacted by suicide, including support groups, closed counseling, and suicide education and awareness.
“We miss him more and more every day. That’s never going away. Hopefully, these events and these donations can help someone, somewhere so no-one else has to go through this,” Cody Williams added.
The public can stay up to date on future Tyler Barger Memorial Events on Facebook.
Copyright © 2020 EYT Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Any copying, redistribution or retransmission of the contents of this service without the express written consent of EYT Media Group, Inc. is expressly prohibited.