ABC-Ted Koran was thinking about committing suicide Saturday night.
He reached out to the VA and the Veterans Suicide Hotline for help, but said he couldn't get any until after he was repeatedly put on hold for up to 10 minutes at time.
Now, 52 operators at a time field about a thousand calls a day, and that's not always even enough to keep some veterans on the verge of suicide from being placed on hold.
“My wife and I saved them, and they saved me,” Tom Koran said.
He said the 60 rescue animals he cares for are the only reason he's here today.
Look, I don't know what it's like to fight for our country. Nor do I know what it's like to come back from fighting for our country and dealing with a deadly disease taking away my wife. What do I know? I know that suicide hotlines are supposed to be reserved for those using it as a last resort. You don't just call a suicide hotline because you woke up with a hangover and a low self esteem. If you did, no one would ever get through to a representative. This story shouldn't even exist. You know why? Because if you get put on hold by a suicide hotline once you should either be dead, or you should have realized that you're not all that suicidal. Can we bring back the sanctity of the suicide hotline? If you are complaining about being put on hold than you are part of the problem. Let's keep the lines open for the people within seconds of kicking over the chair and the people with an itchy trigger finger.
It's 2015, answering phone calls suck. Answering unnecessary phone calls is downright infuriating. Imagine if your job was talking people off the ledge for 8 hours at a time? I would push them out of the way and jump first after about 4 hours. This guy had 60 animals under his care to keep him from biting the bullet, I highly doubt contacting a disgruntled hotline operator was going to do a better job of easing his mind. I don't care how good of a person you are. When you spend all day every day talking to people that want to take their own life at some point you become desensitized to it. Can't always be on your 'A' game. So maybe, just maybe, we can limit those calls to the people who are truly suicidal. That way the operator won't be yawning into the receiver and playing solitaire when an actual life is at stake.