Can't understand why: father still at a loss over death

GALLERY/VIDEO: Crowds gather for SPAN walk

PHIL Heritage still struggles with one question over his son’s suicide: “why?”

Josh Heritage died on his birthday in 2012, two days before Christmas.

Phil, who walked through Bendigo as part of Sunday’s Suicide Awareness Walk, said he was still mourning the unexpected loss of his son.

“We’ve been doing this (walk) since last year,” he said.

“It’s just the right thing to do.

“I find it very hard to understand the reasons why they do it but I can understand the impact it has on other people.”

The walk connects Mr Heritage with families who share similar experiences.

He was one of about 500 people who participated in Sunday's event. 

“I find this walk is very beneficial to me in that it really helps me grieve knowing that there are a lot of other people out there with the same problem,” he said.

“We’re been pretty lucky in that we have a pretty good group that looks after us.

“The thing is, it’s all the people who are left behind who have to be able to grieve."

An image of his son formed part of a quilt on display as part of the event. 

Mr Heritage is full of praise for the organisers of the walk, which has run for three years. 

“I take my hat off to them for starting it," he said. 

“I hope it just gets bigger and better each year.” 

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