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Army suicides down in August

WASHINGTON — Army officials saw a drop in suicide cases in August, but remain on pace for another grim record this year.

Army officials said 25 soldiers – 16 of them active-duty troops – are believed to have killed themselves last month. That’s down from July, when the figure hit an all-time high of 38 suicides among the active and reserve forces.

For the year, the Army has already seen 131 potential active-duty suicide cases and another 80 guardsmen and reservists believed to have taken their own lives. That puts the service on pace to surpass 2010 – the deadliest year for suicides in the service – when 305 servicemembers killed themselves.

On Thursday, Army officials worldwide held a full day of mandatory suicide prevention training in an effort to combat the problem.

In a statement Sergeant Major of the Army Ray Chandler said that any loss of life is a tragedy, but “this loss is preventable.” He said Army leaders will “continue to do everything we can to reverse these trends.”

Soldiers and families in need of crisis assistance can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at any time by dialing 1-800-273-8255 or online at http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

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