A new law requiring California to track veteran suicides was applauded Friday by the two Fresno legislators who authored the bill, the brother of a fallen Marine and a Visalia assemblyman and veteran who had a personal reason to support it.
“This is the first step in the right direction,” said Assemblyman Devon Mathis, R-Visalia, a former sergeant in the Army National Guard who served two tours in Iraq.
Mathis said one of his fellow veterans, who welcomed him home after his second tour in Iraq, died by suicide a few months ago. “He was the happiest-go-luckiest guy I’d ever met,” he said.
His death can now be counted, Mathis said. “This allows us to track this so my brothers and sisters in arms and their families don’t fall through the cracks.”
SEPTEMBER 22, 2017 4:42 PM