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Northland Biker Raises Money for Suicide Awareness, Prevention

Updated: 08/12/2014 6:13 PM
Created: 08/12/2014 4:32 PM WDIO.com
By: Julie Kruse
jkruse@wdio.com
Twitter: JulieMKruse

A Duluth woman is biking to help prevent suicide.

LaNaya Bonogofsky is raising money for the Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (SAVE) program by biking from Two Harbors to the end of the Duluth Lakewalk.

The idea came from a Facebook post. Bonogofsky saw that Lara Kjelsen is running the Disney half marathon on Aug. 31 in California. Kjelsen is from Florida, but Bonogofsky reached out to her and told her she would bike a full marathon to support her.

Bonogofsky has a very personal connection to this issue. She lost her mother, two sisters, an uncle and two friends to suicide. Both Bonogofsky and Kjelsen agree that the topic needs to be talked about.

"It helps not bottle so much up," Bonogofsky said, "which I think a lot of people tend to do, because they don't want to have a stigma put toward them."

"I want to really help it be something that you talk about normally," Kjelsen said. "have it not be something that you have to whisper about or feel weird when it comes up."

The Miracle 11 LLC non-profit is matching any money Bonogofsky raises up to $2,000.

Bonogofsky's bike ride will happen on Aug. 31. She said anyone can join, and those interested in donating can visit her Facebook page or website.

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