FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. (Sept. 3, 2015) -- Fort Leonard Wood joins the Army in observing September as Suicide Prevention Month.

This is in conjunction with National Suicide Prevention Week, Sunday through Sept. 12, and the World Suicide Prevention Day Sept. 10.

This year the Army will be focusing on amplifying its Ready and Resilient, or R2, message and calling Soldiers, Army civilians and Family members to "Take Action" by treating one another with dignity and respect, becoming interveners instead of bystanders and living the Army values every day.

Suicide prevention is a commander's responsibility. But, suicide prevention is all of our responsibility. The solution runs from peer-to-peer, Family member-to-Family member, Soldier-to-Soldier, worker-to-worker and friend-to-friend. Suicide can be prevented by our involvement.

Remember Ask, Care, Escort, or ACE training to recognize suicidal behavior.

Ask. When we recognize that someone is exhibiting suicidal behavior, we ask, "Are you considering killing yourself? Care. We show we care for someone by becoming involved in their lives. We are available to them. We listen and don't criticize. Escort. We never leave someone who is contemplating suicide alone -- not even to make a phone call. We escort them to the appropriate help.

Every Soldier, Department of the Army civilian and Family member plays an integral role in preventing suicide.

Be a friend to someone who is hurting. You can make a difference. Get involved.

If you are considering suicide, know that there is help. A physician, counselor, Family member, friend or chaplain can help you find the right answer. There is no shame in seeking help.

Important phone numbers include:

-- Duty chaplain after hours through the Installation Operations Center watch officer, 573.563.6126/6127

-- Emergency 911

-- Emergency room at General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital, 573.596.0131, ext. 60456

-- Military Police Desk (24-hour) 573.596.0131, ext. 66614

-- Installation Chaplain's Office 573.596.0131, ext. 62127

-- Military OneSource, 800.324.9647

-- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 800.273.8255 (TALK)

-- VA Crisis Hotline, 800.273.8255

-- The Defense Center of Excellence Outreach Center, 866.966.1020

-- The Wounded Soldier and Family Hotline, 800.984.8523

(Editor's note, LaMertha is a prevention program coordinator and suicide prevention program manager, Army Substance Abuse Program office, Fort Leonard Wood.)