Mariel Hemingway Appearing at URMC to Discuss Suicide

Sep. 4, 2013
Actress Promoting Awareness, Mental Health Evaluation, and Therapy


Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of writer Ernest Hemingway, says she has been “running from crazy” her whole life.  Mental illness and suicide have been pervasive in her family, and she has personally battled depression and suicidal thoughts.  The Academy-award winning actor, author, eco-enthusiast and healthy lifestyle advocate will share her story of struggle and triumph during a public presentation at the University of Rochester Medical Center on Saturday, September 14 beginning at 11:15 a.m.
The event is sponsored by URMC’s Center for the Study and Prevention of Suicide (CSPS), located within the Department of Psychiatry.  Suicide is the nation’s 10th leading cause of death in the United States, and affects all demographics.  URMC Psychiatry chair and CSPS co-director Eric D. Caine, M.D. says Hemingway’s visit will help increase understanding that suicide is preventable with proper risk evaluation and effective intervention.
“One of the center’s responsibilities is to cast light on this serious public health challenge and, while doing so, reaffirm there is hope to save lives,” says Caine.  “Hemingway’s story is about survival in the face of a tremendous amount of adversity.”
Her 45-minute presentation will take place in the auditorium of URMC’s Helen Wood Hall, located on Crittenden Boulevard.  The event is free, but there will be a fee for parking in URMC visitor lots.
Before her public presentation, Hemingway will meet privately with researchers devoted to suicide prevention.  Supported by a $4.1 million grant from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), URMC now leads several partners in the collaborative Injury Control Research Center for Suicide Prevention.  It is the only CDC center of its kind focusing primarily on suicide prevention.  CSPS research has included studies of suicide among the elderly, alcohol dependence and suicide, the role of depression in suicide, and partner violence and suicide.  Prevention initiatives involve schools, community and court settings, social service agencies, and mental health organizations, as well as partnerships with the Veterans Administration and the US Air Force.
Hemingway is in Rochester for a screening of her autobiographical documentary, Running from Crazy, at the 2013 Greentopia Film Festival.  The film is showing at The Little Theatre, 240 East Avenue in Rochester, on Saturday, September 14 beginning at 9 p.m.  It will be followed by a discussion with Hemingway, moderated by film critic Jack Garner. Tickets are $10 in advance, or $12 at the door.  Advance tickets can be purchased online at