Silhouette Project Serves as Powerful Reminder of Veteran Suicide Rate

AUGUSTA, Maine (WABI) A powerful reminder of the number of veterans whose lives are lost to suicide was on display at the State House on Tuesday.

The Silhouette Project was started by Linda Lajoie of Gardiner.

She lost her son, Dustin Hadfield, to suicide in 2014.

He served in the U.S. Air Force in Afghanistan and returned home in 2012.

The life-size silhouettes represent the more than twenty veterans that commit suicide every day in this country.

Each feature a photo and story of a loved one who has served their country and returned with invisible wounds.

Lajoie says the project is meant to honor those veterans as well as spark conversation about the often stigmatized subject of suicide.

"We can not possibly fix a problem no one's willing to talk about. You know it's easy to brush under the carpet but when you see 20-22 life size silhouettes of veterans, it kind of really makes you think and hits that number home," said Lajoie.

The project also serves as a call to action to support any of the 400 organizations dedicated to helping veterans all over the state.

Lajoie says they'll be hosting a 5K fundraiser in May. To follow the Silhouette Project, go to their Facebook page.