Families of suicide victims decorate the Memory Tree - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

Families of suicide victims decorate the Memory Tree

Posted: Updated:

MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 New) - The "Memory Tree" gets decorated by friends and families of suicide victims.

Each ornament on the tree represents a suicide victim, and unfortunately, there are so many victims in this area now, that the Heartbeat Monroe organization had to get a bigger tree.

"Our little tree...it's sad the we have to put that many on there," says Maria Pipes who has helped decorate the Memory Tree for the past few years. She's been apart of Heartbeat Monroe for just as long. Pipes joined just after her son, Dexter, committed suicide in March of 2007.

"It's not like talking to a psychiatrist or somebody, because these mothers experience what you're experiencing," says Pipes about the support group.

Families of suicide victims walk to the Christmas tree in front of St. Thomas Episcopal church each year to decorate. 33 red lights represent the average suicides in region 8 each year, and 550 white lights for the average suicides in Louisiana.

Before hanging each hand-painted ornament, the name of the victim is said out-loud. The group helps families cope throughout the year but holidays are especially difficult times for some.

"The anniversary of his death, Christmas, summer, school, football... because he was a part of everything, in your life, and you just try to get through it," says Pipes.

Pipes says families can never fully move past a suicide, but with special support like Heartbeat Monroe, families can better cope.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Gun company cuts ties with reality TV star

    Gun company cuts ties with reality TV star

    Thursday, August 28 2014 1:59 PM EDT2014-08-28 17:59:12 GMT
    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A firearms company affiliated with reality TV star Will Hayden is distancing itself from him after his arrest on rape charges. In a statement on its website, Red Jacket Firearms LLC says it has legally separated from Hayden.
    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A firearms company affiliated with reality TV star Will Hayden is distancing itself from him after his arrest on rape charges. In a statement on its website, Red Jacket Firearms LLC says it has legally separated from Hayden.
  • Cops Producers Talk About Crewmember

    Cops Producers Talk About Crewmember

    Thursday, August 28 2014 11:21 AM EDT2014-08-28 15:21:56 GMT
    Omaha, NE(AP)- Omaha police say officers' gunfire killed a 'Cops' television show crew member and a robbery suspect at a fast-food restaurant.
    Omaha, NE(AP)- Omaha police say officers' gunfire killed a 'Cops' television show crew member and a robbery suspect at a fast-food restaurant.
  • Teacher accused of having sex with 2 students

    Teacher accused of having sex with 2 students

    Thursday, August 28 2014 9:53 AM EDT2014-08-28 13:53:04 GMT
    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Riverdale Christian Academy administrators have fired English teacher Ashley Dowden following her confession to deputies that she had sex with a 16-year-old student.
    BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Riverdale Christian Academy administrators have fired English teacher Ashley Dowden following her confession to deputies that she had sex with a 16-year-old student.
  • Jonesville man arrested after explosion in wife's car

    Jonesville man arrested after explosion in wife's car

    Monday, August 25 2014 10:15 PM EDT2014-08-26 02:15:52 GMT
    JONESVILLE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Catahoula Parish Sheriff's Office has arrested a Jonesville man after an explosion in his wife's car Monday morning.
    JONESVILLE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Catahoula Parish Sheriff's Office has arrested a Jonesville man after an explosion in his wife's car Monday morning.
  • Local Red Cross Chapter slashed in cutbacks

    Local Red Cross Chapter slashed in cutbacks

    Thursday, August 28 2014 2:22 PM EDT2014-08-28 18:22:44 GMT
    MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Big changes at the American Red Cross on a national level are having an effect on local staffing. As part of restructuring, the Northeast Louisiana Chapter based in Monroe is loosing its executive director and three other full time employees.
    MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Big changes at the American Red Cross on a national level are having an effect on local staffing. As part of restructuring, the Northeast Louisiana Chapter based in Monroe is loosing its executive director and three other full time employees.
  • Attorney says man did not commit suicide while in police custody

    Attorney says man did not commit suicide while in police custody

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 11:16 PM EDT2014-08-28 03:16:42 GMT
    New Iberia, La. (KNOE 8 News) - It's a local story making national news. Monroe-based attorney Carol Powell Lexing is representing the family of Victor White III, who died while in custody of the New Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office on March 3. 
    New Iberia, La. (KNOE 8 News) - It's a local story making national news. Monroe-based attorney Carol Powell Lexing is representing the family of Victor White III, who died while in custody of the New Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office on March 3. 
  • Jolie, Pitt wed in Chateau Miraval, France

    Jolie, Pitt wed in Chateau Miraval, France

    Thursday, August 28 2014 11:46 AM EDT2014-08-28 15:46:59 GMT
    NEW YORK (AP) - Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt were married Saturday in Chateau Miraval, France, says a spokesman for the couple.
    NEW YORK (AP) - Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt were married Saturday in Chateau Miraval, France, says a spokesman for the couple.
  • Shreveport man dies in shooting

    Shreveport man dies in shooting

    Thursday, August 28 2014 1:51 PM EDT2014-08-28 17:51:15 GMT
    SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) - Police say a 22-year-old Shreveport man has died following an early morning shooting.
    SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) - Police say a 22-year-old Shreveport man has died following an early morning shooting.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KNOE. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.