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Editor’s Note: If you need help, or know someone who does, please call Alberta’s Mental Health Helpline: 1-877-303-2642.
Ken Chan, a former military veteran, suffered from depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, according to those closest to him.
“He probably had a lot of pain that he just kept inside, depression being one of them,” said Harold Linder, stepson of Chan’s.
Chan, who took his life at 64, was a veteran who served in the army for 25 years.
Before taking his own life, Chan sent two emails. One email was sent to his co-workers at the trucking company he was employed at. In the letter, he detailed how he felt disrespected. He also expressed love for his coworkers.
The second was sent to federal and provincial health ministers about medical assistance in dying.
Chan sent the emails roughly 25 minutes prior to taking his own life.
“I can’t change the past, but it’s too bad a really good man had to do that,” said Linder of the tragic circumstances.
He said by discussing his stepfather’s death, he hopes to help those who are facing similar struggles.
“Try and love yourself and try and love the ones around you.”
Chan’s funeral is scheduled for Saturday.
Deaths by suicide within the Canadian veteran population are tragic and a top public health concern, as former Canadian soldiers commit suicide at a much higher frequency than the general population, according to numerous studies.