Finding Peace in the Presence of Pain

Kathy Omsby, 21, a university student and record-setting distance runner, lies paralyzed in the hospital as family and friends react in stunned disbelief to her attempted suicide.

Kathy's whole life had been a series of successes. She had always been a straight-A student. In her final year of high school she graduated top of her class of 600 with an unprecedented 99 percent average, and was actually honored by the mayor of her town.

"You get a Kathy Ormsby once in a lifetime," said Ralph Robertson, her high school principal.

The year Kathy attempted to take her life, in the women's collegiate championship, she was favored to win after setting her collegiate record earlier in the year. After dropping out at the 6500 meter mark she jogged forlornly from the stadium, and according to police, kept on for two more blocks until she came to the city's main bridge and there threw herself over the side.

Sadly, multiple spinal fractures will prevent any possibility of Kathy ever walking again.

In Oxford, England, Olivia Channon, 22, daughter of a British cabinet minister and a child of privilege, had just finished her final exams at the end of her course at Oxford University when she joined other students and friends for a night of celebration. But Olivia mixed heroin with her drinking. At 2:30 a.m. she lay down to sleep. Five hours later she was found dead.

Second only to car accidents,
suicide is the most common killer
of young people in the West.

In a quiet suburban home in Sydney, there sits on the mantelpiece a shrine decorated with trophies for public speaking won by a very promising young man. But the seemingly very confident Jeff who won these awards is no longer around to enjoy them. He took his life and left behind a broken-hearted family.

Second only to car accidents, many of which are caused by alcohol and drugs, suicide is the most common killer of young people in the West.

On the TV program, "Too Young to Die," one Australian young person said that she had tried to commit suicide several times. When asked why she did it, Meagan said, "At the time I was looking for something through drugs and couldn't find it—which was sort of ultimate peace."

People will do almost anything to find peace and will self-destruct if they can't. Thousands kill themselves every year and millions more waste away and die before their time because they can't find peace with each other.

Peace isn't found in technology. We have learned how to put man on the moon, but not how to live together in peace. Neither is it found in affluence. Olivia Channon of Oxford had everything that position and money could buy, but also turned to drugs.

Continued on Page Two


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