Suicides among active duty soldiers are up 46 percent compared to last year, Army reveals


Suicides among US Army active-duty soldiers were up by 46 percent last quarter compared to the same time in 2020, according to a new Pentagon report. 

In the second quarter of this year, 60 active-duty members of the Army took their own lives, compared to 41 in the second quarter of 2020.

The number of suicides was also up 41 percent among Navy personnel, from 12 in the second quarter of last year, to 17 in 2021.

Between April and June, 139 military personnel across all branches, both active and reserve, have died by suicide.

That figure is more than double the 67 military personnel who have died from COVID-19.  

Suicides among active-duty military personnel have steadily increased each year, from 267 in 2015 to 384 in 2020, according to the Department of Defense report. 

This year until June 30, 174 active duty servicemembers took their own lives.

Suicides among US Army active-duty soldiers were up by 46 percent last quarter compared to the same time in 2020, according to a new Pentagon report

In the second quarter of this year, 60 active-duty members of the Army took their own lives, compared to 41 in the second quarter of 2020

In the second quarter of this year, 60 active-duty members of the Army took their own lives, compared to 41 in the second quarter of 2020

Experts have said the pandemic could be a factor in the increased number of suicide deaths.

‘The pandemic has fundamentally changed us in a lot of ways,’ Army Veterans and Texas A&M Sociologist Jeffrey Yarvis told KWTX last week. 

‘It’s caused a lot of isolation and can influence unit cohesion, belongingness and togetherness. So, if you’re cut off from that family a little more, I think it makes things difficult.’  

Last month, the military released data showing that suicides in the armed forces increased by 15 percent in 2020, primarily in the Army and Marine Corps branches. There were 580 suicides last year, 76 more than in 2019.

In the Army National Guard, suicides rose by 35 percent to 103 last year, compared to 76 in 2019. Active-duty army personnel saw a nearly 20 percent increase, from 47 to 62, and 10 members of the Marine Corps took their own lives last year compared to 9 in 2019.

‘The findings are troubling,’ Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said, according to Fox

‘Suicide rates among our service members and military families are still too high, and the trends are not going in the right direction.’ 

Last month, the military released data showing that suicides in the armed forces increased by 15 percent in 2020, primarily in the Army and Marine Corps branches. There were 580 suicides last year, 76 more than in 2019

Last month, the military released data showing that suicides in the armed forces increased by 15 percent in 2020, primarily in the Army and Marine Corps branches. There were 580 suicides last year, 76 more than in 2019

Miranda Briggs founded Fight the War Within after her husband, Army Ranger Garrett Briggs, took his own life in 2018. 

In light of the recent suicide spike in the armed forces, she and the members of her 501(c) foundation have been ramping up their efforts to reach out to soldiers, providing them with resources for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. 

‘You remember that by touching one life or impacting one life, can help so many other people that’re out there,’ she told KWTX.

‘We can’t rewind the clocks and bring service members like my husband back, but we can remember them by trying to help other people that are here and that’s how they live on.’

'The findings are troubling,' Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said, according to Fox . 'Suicide rates among our service members and military families are still too high, and the trends are not going in the right direction'

‘The findings are troubling,’ Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said, according to Fox . ‘Suicide rates among our service members and military families are still too high, and the trends are not going in the right direction’

This summer, Brown and Boston Universities’ Cost of War Project reported that the 7,052 servicemen and women killed in combat in post-9/11 wars paled in comparison to the 30,177 veterans who died by suicide during that period. 

‘Unless the U.S. government and U.S. society makes significant changes in the ways we manage the mental health crisis among our service members and veterans, suicide rates will continue to climb,’ the research paper warned. 

‘That is a cost of war we cannot accept.’



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