WBTV reporter talks about the family experience of enduring suicide

On the subject of suicide: Candid reflections of a journalist

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The news connected to this week's deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain cuts close to the core for WBTV's David Whisenant.

It was 31 years ago, he faced the unthinkable when his father J.R. Jake Whisenant took his own life.

"As far as I was concerned there was no warning signs. There was nothing. I had seen my dad a few hours before he took his own life, and I had no indication that anything at all was wrong," Whisenant said.

In David's case, unseen and unexpected hardship followed the loss of his life.

"You're still left with the consequences. You're still left with the pain. You're still left with cleaning up the mess and I don't mean the actual mess of the actual suicide, but things that are left over," Whisenant said.

"Things you don't think about. Things like how you take care of the bills? he asks" How do you take care of the commitments and responsibilities that they and the other person had."

Whisenant said the self-inflicted act is no respecter of person.

"Suicide doesn't discriminate. The rich, the famous, the poor, the depressed," he said.

In the case of David Whisenant who we've grown to know and trust for more than 20 years, healing decades later remains hard to come by.

"So whether you're a spiritual person or a strictly a secular person. The pain is gonna stay there, and one of the hardest things is the why," he said.

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