Double-murder, suicide highlights importance of addressing mental health before its too late

Health

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — In the wake of a tragic double-murder suicide involving a West Roxbury mother and her two young children, mental health advocates are urging those who are struggling to seek help.

Erin Pascal, 40, of West Roxbury, was found unconscious alongside her two children, Allison, 4, and Andrew, 15 months, on the sidewalk outside the Renaissance Parking Garage on Christmas Day. All three were later pronounced dead at the hospital.

The parking garage, owned by Northeastern University, is the same location where two separate suicides occurred earlier this year.

After the incident, Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins urged anyone who is struggling to seek help immediately, saying it could prevent a similar tragedy from happening again.

Watch Now: It’s OK Not To Be OK »

“It is my duty to say this: If you are someone you know is thinking about suicide, there are services available to help you,” Rollins said. “This Christmas Day tragedy demonstrates the urgency of addressing mental health, suicide and homicide.”

In Rhode Island, CEO of Horizon Healthcare Jim Ryczek said their call center receives between 75-100 calls each week.

Ryczek said anyone who feels like they have nowhere else to turn should reach out for help.

One year after, BH Link, a 24/7 mental health and substance use hotline and triage center, was approved through an executive order by Gov. Gina Raimondo, thousands of people have utilized at least one of their five treatment bays.

“We’ve taken well over 6,000 calls and about 2,000 assessments on people since that time,” Ryczek said. “We’re trying to normalize behavioral health like we normalize health issues so that people talk about what’s going on with each other and with their loved ones and friends.”

Ryczek also urges family and friends to take action when someone’s behavior seems out of the norm. He said providing well-advertised resources for help will end the stigma that ends lives.

“Not talking about it is the number one thing that leads to some more problems in the future,” Ryczek said.

The phone number to the 24/7 Mental Health Hotline at BH Link is (401) 414-LINK (5465).

Suicide prevention: Here’s how to get help » | Parent Guide: Suicide Prevention »

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Providence

Download Mobile Apps from WPRI 12
DOWNLOAD APPS NOW: Apple App Store | Google Play Store
PINPOINT WEATHER // Quick Links:

12 INFORMA: INFORMACIÓN DE CORONAVIRUS EN ESPAÑOL

More 12 Informa

Don't Miss

Viewer Pa on WPRI.com

Community Events & Happenings

More Community

The Border Report Tour

More Border Report Tour
Live Cams on WPRI.com