11/14/11 - 9:19am
SITKA (AP) — Mt. Edgecumbe senior Tessa Baldwin knows all too well about the staggering suicide rate among Alaska Natives.
Baldwin, a 17-year-old from Kotzebue, was 5 when she saw her uncle take his own life. She grew up around the epidemic, which hit home for her again last year when she lost her boyfriend to suicide.
“It’s just always been around me,” Baldwin said on a recent afternoon, seated next to the basketball court at B.J. McGillis Gymnasium. “It’s always been an option.”