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Fighting depression in teens to be focus of track competition


May 18, 2005 - Oakville Senior High School, 5557 Mil-burn Road, will be the site of a track and field meet aimed at raising money to fight teenage depression and suicide.

Sponsored by Communities Healing Adolescent Depression and Suicide, competition will be broken into six age groups and in some events into male and female divisions. The Sunday, May 29, competition is in association with USA Track and Field's Ozark Association.

Age divisions include: Primary, born from 1997 to 2000; Bantam, born in 1995 or 1996; Midget, born in 1993 or 1994; Youth, born 1991 or 1992; Intermediate, born in 1989 or 1990; or Young Men and Women born in 1987 or 1988.

The Youth, Intermediate and Young Men and Women divisions will feature separate shot-put competitions for males and females. All other events will feature mixed participation.

Additional events include a 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash, 400-meter dash, 800-meter dash, 1,500-meter run, 1,500-meter race walk, 3,000-meter run, a 1,600-meter relay, long jump, high jump and a 50-meter dash for the Primary Division.

Known as the Chad McCord Memorial Invitational Track Meet in honor of organizer Larry McCord's son Chad, who died two years ago, entry will cost $20 per event the day of the meet, $15 if pre-registered. Teams also may register at a cost of $15 the day of the meet or $10 if pre-registered by Wednesday, May 25.

Information contained in CHADS registration literature indicates suicide is the No. 1 cause of death among Americans ages 15 to 19, higher than the other top six causes such as cancer, heart disease and homicide combined.

"Every two hours, 11 minutes a person under the age of 25 completes suicide,'' said the registration form.

Funds raised by the event will be used for research, advocacy, education and awareness of the phenomenon. Entries should be sent to Larry McCord, meet organizer, 3775 Gumtree, St. Louis 63129, or by e-mail to lar2mar@charter.net. All donations are tax deductible.

The organization needs 150 volunteers to work four-hour shifts. To volunteer or obtain more information, call (314) 487-9414.

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