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Community picnic remembers those who died by addiction, suicide

The Loved Never Forgotten memorial holds the names of 163 people. A picnic set for Aug. 20 will honor them.

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The Loved Never Forgotten memorial outside the Ruth House in Superior, 632 Grand Ave., lists the names of those who died by addiction or suicide. As of Wednesday, Aug. 3, there were 163 names. They will be spoken aloud during a community picnic Aug. 20 at nearby Kelly Park.
Maria Lockwood / Superior Telegram
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SUPERIOR — The second annual Loved Never Forgotten picnic, which honors those who have died by addiction or suicide, will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aug. 20 at Kelly Park, 711 Grand Ave. Everyone is invited. The free event will include a live band, a food truck and a time to read the names of those who have died.

“We’ve always said at least once a year their names will be spoken. That’s really the main theme to it, and just allowing families that peace and comfort and joy at that time,” said Chrissy Foster, ministry coordinator for Walking Victorious Ministries, which operates the Ruth House.

It’s about being there for those families, she said, whether they need love, prayer or just to sit.

“We’ve lost a lot of people in this community,” Foster said.

The Loved Never Forgotten memorial outside the Ruth House was dedicated at last year’s picnic, with new names being added throughout the year at the request of families. As of Aug. 3, the list included 163 names.

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“We're not going to allow those people to be forgotten, because their lives mattered. They were somebody’s mom, dad, brother, sister — all those things,” Foster said.

Last year’s turnout was awesome, she said, and families appreciated the opportunity to gather and share their stories with each other.

“It’s always nice to feel like you’re not alone. They’re not alone in it … there’s other people that you can talk with about it,” Foster said.

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One of three signs above names listed on the Loved Never Forgotten memorial on Wednesday, Aug. 3, lets those who visit know these people were loved.
Maria Lockwood / Superior Telegram

Addiction has affected every family in the community to some extent, she said, whether it be at a distance or close to home. The picnic is a chance for those who have been affected to connect.

“We just want everybody to know that there is support out there. There are people that care, and if you need help or you just need somebody to talk to everybody’s welcome,” Foster said.

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Benches and chairs rest near the Loved Never Forgotten memorial outside the Ruth House in Superior, 632 Grand Ave., on Wednesday, Aug. 3. The memorial lists 163 names of those who have died by addiction or suicide. The names will be spoken aloud during a community picnic Aug. 20 at nearby Kelly Park.
Maria Lockwood / Superior Telegram
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Belle Modeen was surprised with a ticket to audition for the show during an event unveiling Superior High School's renovated Performing Arts Center.

Maria Lockwood covers news in Douglas County, Wisconsin, for the Superior Telegram.
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