Philadelphia Out of the Darkness Overnight Walk
The national Out of the Darkness Overnight Walk for suicide prevention kicked off Saturday night with nearly 3,000 walkers from around the US and as far away as South Africa. The evening started off with an opening ceremony where Brian Yeh spoke about his mother, who took her life in 2009. Then, former Bachelorette contestant Craig Robinson told the story of fellow former contestant Gia Allemande, who he memorialized through the walk. Robinson also introduced Allemande's mother Donna, brother Dylan, and fiance Ryan Anderson (NBA) to the attendees. There was an emotional "Bead Ceremony" where loved ones paid tribute to those they lost with colorful beads which represented whether their loss was a spouse, parent, friend, or if they themselves were struggling with suicide. The walk then kicked off and wound its way through 17 miles of scenic Philadelphia returning to the Art Museum, where walkers were greeted by a path of luminary lights—each created by a walker in honor of their loved one.