Tommy Raskin: In Memoriam
post by Jessie
Content warning: Suicide
I have been deeply touched this morning reading about the life and death of Tommy Raskin, a Harvard Law student who was active in the EA movement.
The intent of this post is to express my deepest sympathy, respect and condolences to those who knew him, and to share his story with those who didn't.
I did not know Tommy Raskin, though I wish that I had, and I cannot imagine what his family and friends are going through at the moment.
The last note Tommy wrote to his parents included the line: "Please look after each other, the animals, and the global poor for me."
We have lost a warrior. For anyone facing suffering like Tommy's, please know that you are not alone.
The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is available 24 hours a day, as are many such resources in countries outside the United States. Learn more here.
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comment by Jakob_J ·
2021-01-12T09:12:00.809Z · EA(p) · GW(p)
This terrible news. I also did not know Tommy, but my heart really goes out to his friends and family. Reading the statement I was touched by his strength of character - he appears to have been extremely gifted, loving and humble and with a genuine interest in helping others and the world. We can all surely find great inspiration in the exemplary life Tommy led.
This is also a stark reminder that no matter how outwardly successful or happy we might appear, we all carry our share of troubles and negative feelings; doubting ourselves and our worthiness, often trying to hide our sadness and our loneliness out of shame. Though just like Tommy, we're all merely human, we all have flaws and imperfections. We are not alone in our struggles.
For anyone who might be feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope with their negative feelings, or are just interested in more mental health resources, I would like to recommend The Feeling Good Podcast (available with most podcast apps) with David Burns (author of the book Feeling Good, though the podcast is much better). There are episodes available on suicide prevention, loneliness, perfectionism, feelings of worthlessness, COVID-19 and much more. It has drastically improved my own mood and those that I know that have listened to it, and I believe it might help others as well.