ODU student running 132 miles to raise awareness about suicide epidemic

Colin Lowther.png
Posted at 3:46 PM, Aug 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-25 18:40:16-04

NORFOLK, Va. - ODU student Colin Lowther is laced up, fueled up, hydrated and ready to pound the pavement for a training run.

"It is five marathons plus one mile - so crazy," said Lowther.

Add that up and it's 132 miles Lowther will be running alone on September 9, a nearly impossible physical feat.

"It's never been just about the run; it's more my way of getting people's attention and my message across," he said.

His message: Raising awareness about mental health and suicide. Last year on January 1, the 22-year-old attempted to take his own life.

"[I] got to college, things started going south, and I started getting in my head, so I took 90 of my anti-depressants and overdosed," he explained.

Lowther lived and then went to hospital in Virginia Beach to recover. That's when he says he saw the light.

"I found out so many other people are like this and going through the same thing, yet I felt like I couldn't tell people for years," he said.

Now, he is going the distance, working to break the stigma and calling attention to the 132 people in the U.S. who take their lives every day, according to the CDC.

"That number really struck me," he said.

So, he started the fundraiser Run for the 132.

"I did not want to just heal and go about my life. I wanted to make sure other people don't fall into the same pit," he said.

So, he is running a long loop through Norfolk to the Virginia Beach Oceanfront - twice - starting at 3 a.m. on Sept. 9.

"{I'm] stopping here for an aid station break, then doing the entire loop backwards again," he said.

It will take him about 40 to 50 hours total, a grueling undertaking, but Lowther says it's worth every step.

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"I think it's important to show people you can have a mental illness and [have] attempted suicide, but it doesn't mean you don't deserve to have a happy life," he said.

To help Colin, click here.