Help available for veterans in danger of suicide

EUGENE, Ore. - Cecil Ranne remembers the time he spent overseas in the Air Force.

Some of those memories, he wishes he could block out.

"Whenever we did convoys to other bases for medical supplies, there was somebody shot at a stop light," he said. "So we did a lot of speeding through town in unmarked cars, you know, to avoid snipers."

Ranne said those moments and emotions stay with you after you return home. Years later, they can resurface.

"You're driving down the road and you see a car on the side of the road - and it's a possible threat," he said.

Ranne suffers from PTSD but calls himself one of the lucky ones.

Unlike many other veterans coping with PTSD, Ranne is still alive.

Some troops lose their lives in the line of duty.

A tragic number take their own lives once they get back home.

According to an Oregon Health Authority study, the suicide rate was significantly higher among veterans than among non-veterans for both males and females in Oregon between 2008 to 2012.

The study also found suicide is the leading cause of death among veterans under 45 years of age.

And the veteran suicide rate was higher in Lane County than the state average.

There are resources out there to help save lives.

Veterans can call the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255, text 838255, or log onto the Veterans Crisis Line website to have confidential contact with mental health professionals.