Written by John Face
Photo Credit John Face
November 10, 2021
Two years ago last night Albion College Student Zachary Winston would take his life. The tragedy rocked Albion College and the community as national attention was brought to our front door. Our campus and community was blanketed in sadness and tears were shed as we all dealt with this in our own way.
Then Albion College President Mauri Ditzler released this statement the following day: “As a community, our hearts are broken today as we share the news of the passing of one of our students, Zachary Winston, Zach was a finance major, a student in the Gerstacker Institute for Business and Management, and member of the Albion College men’s basketball team. Beyond that, he was an extremely charismatic young man with an infectious smile. Zach was a recognized leader who was well known across every facet of our campus, He was a fantastic student with a world of potential before him. He was deeply loved and will be deeply missed.
Below I am reprinting an editorial I released on November 10 2019 as we all came to terms with this terrible situation. Some of you may question why bring this up? Why talk about it since we are healing? We have to that’s why. We must open communication so something like this doesn’t happen again.
I would like to let everyone know there is always someone who will listen, care and give you love. If you are thinking about suicide please reach out by calling the National Suicide Hotline at 800-273-8255.
Albion College students if you are having difficulty you can make that call or talk to your friends, call Campus Safety for help, talk to a staff member. The key is to talk to someone. We will help.
Here is the Editorial with some edits:
Written by John Face
City Watch NEWS
November 10, 2019
Most know by now that one of our children took his life last night. He decided for whatever reason he had to step in front of a train. No one will ever truly understand why he and so many others choose suicide. We have to talk about this, and yes we need to talk today.
He has family and friends here in Albion who are hurt, mad, scared and confused. Suicide occurs so commonly now that we as a society ignore it. Well today my dear Albion friends here we are. There is no more ignoring this and we have to work harder. Not to just prevent future college students from doing this but all of us in Albion.
Today we all feel pain. Our Albion College students belong to all of us and are on loan from their families. We have a responsibility to make sure they are good and safe. In the coming hours and days the entire Albion College family will mourn. That means we, their Albion family mourns with them as well. Reach out to each other, make sure that they are fine. Offer an ear to hear them, a hand to comfort them and a shoulder to cry on.
In the coming days and week’s we need to start having uncomfortable discussions about suicide. We need to try and make our small slice of the world better for everyone. As a friend I say to all I am here for you. There are choices and we can find you help. We must now work harder, for each other and especially for our kids to get them help.