JOSHUA A suicide is normally not something we report on, but in the past two weeks, two young people in the small town of Joshua south of Fort Worth have taken their own lives.

The incidents have prompted their school and city to make changes.

Joshua police said 17-year-old Courtney Moss deliberately drove her red car across the center line of FM 917 and into the path of a Dr Pepper delivery truck.

I was working inside the store and heard something like a boom, said Meizar Jamhour, the clerk at a nearby store.

Courtney had just left the Joshua Accelerated Learning Center where went to school. Her principal, Kenneth Bodine, had just asked her how she was doing during lunch, and he said the teen appeared to be just fine.

It just kind of sucked the wind out of my sails because these kids are my family; I care about them, Bodine said.

This is the Joshua ISD's second student suicide in more than two weeks. A 13-year-old who attended Loflin Middle School was found hanged in his barn. His funeral was just last Thursday.

I really don't know what the causes are, Bodine said. Obviously we're going to have to spend some time figuring out how you know if there is something we can do to help our students better handle stress.

Friends said Courtney Moss was reportedly having problems with her baby's father.

The 13-year-old at the middle school was allegedly being bullied by peers.

It's a small town, and this is really sad, Jamhour said. They really need to get a lot of attention from their parents.

Experts say suicide can be prevented. For parents, the first step is to recognize warning signs that include:

  • suicidal threats
  • making final arrangements
  • giving away prized possessions
  • a preoccupation with death
  • sudden changes in behavior or appearance

If these sound familiar, ask children directly if they are thinking about suicide. If the answer is yes, provide constant supervision until they can get counseling or other help.

Contact Crisis Line of Dallas offers a free and confidential 24-hour hotline service for crisis prevention, intervention and referral in North Texas. Teens and young people can call 972-233-8336; adults can get help at 972-233-2233.


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