It has been said that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. Like a lot of Alaska superlatives, the high rate of Alaska suicides was impressed upon some of us growing up in high-risk social circumstances. We were told by teachers and counselors that many people in Alaska have “issues” that could be so profound as to cause them to want to harm themselves. It wasn’t as much of a concern when I was in elementary and junior high school in Anchorage, but when my family moved to the bush, we found the reality of suicide in Alaska was not being exaggerated. It is a longstanding serious problem for small communities. Today Alaska maintains one of the highest rates of suicide in the country.