A Marine Corps veteran herself, Tulsa Community College student Megan Lowry, wanted to do something to stop the number of veteran suicides by bringing awareness to the problem in our community. She lost her father, Wayne Lowry, to suicide in April 2014 and with an estimated 22 veterans committing suicide a day, she took on this fight to educate the community about the issue and save lives.
“My father and too many of the men and women I served with feel they have no other option with no hope or help in sight,” Lowry said. “Suicide is not a temporary problem, it’s a permanent loss and it is preventable.”
Lowry created the P.U.R.P.O.S.E. 2.2 race. PURPOSE, stands for Powerful Unbreakable Resilient Person Overcoming Suicide Everyday and the 2.2 represents the roughly 22 veterans that commit suicide a day.
“The transition is difficult from combat to civilian life. There is still a stigma associated with veterans who need help, they are seen as weak, not able to do your job and ostracized,” Lowry said. “I want people to understand PTSD is an ordinary human response to an extraordinary event.”
The Tulsa Community College Student Veterans of America is sponsoring the PURPOSE 2.2 mile walk/run to help support awareness and prevention of veteran suicide. The race is Saturday, April 30 at the TCC Southeast Campus at 10300 East 81st Street Tulsa, Oklahoma 74133. The race begins at 8 a.m. with on-site registration available. On-line registration closes April 27. The event will raise money for Wounded Veterans of Oklahoma and three Student Veterans of America chapters at The University of Tulsa, Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology, and TCC.
Race participants receive a PURPOSE 2.2T-shirt that can be personalized with a blank memory box across the shoulders for racers to remember those who felt there was no other option and took their life, or a phrase or quote on suicide prevention.
A pre-registration party with live music will take place 5 p.m. - 10 p.m., April 29 at the Jenks Riverwalk Crossing and Amphitheater located at 500 Riverwalk Terrace. A post-event party and free concert, sponsored by the TCC Student Veterans of America in conjunction with the Marine Corps League and Dirt Floor Arena, will take place 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. at the Dirt Floor Arena located at 12420 S Garnett Rd, Broken Arrow, OK 74011.
Sponsors of the PURPOSE 2.2 include YogaFit Broken Arrow, Corporate Health and Wellness, Currentland Magazine, Exit 34 Band, Laureate Institute for Brain Research (LIBR,) the Tulsa Vet Center, and Wounded Veterans of Oklahoma.
For more info and to register: www.tulsacc.edu/PURPOSE.