Our Inspiration – Michael
On July 15, 2016, our lives changed dramatically. Our beloved son and brother, Michael P. Donatucci, lost his battle with depression. For us, the loss of Michael remains overwhelming, paralyzing at times. It’s incomprehensible that someone like Michael who was in the prime of his life, having achieved great success academically and professionally, surrounded by a loving family and loyal friends, would find his life not worth living. Unfortunately, that’s the dark side of depression. The struggle is real but often dealt with in silence. Michael’s struggle was no different. As an adult, Michael struggled with depression. As a child, from his early years, he struggled with anxiety. From the outside looking in, Michael didn’t appear the poster-child for anxiety or depression. Then again, who does? Anxiety and depression do not discriminate. And while Michael received professional help for his depression, only his immediate family and close friends knew about his illness. The stigma associated with mental illness forces a lot of those who struggle with it to remain silent for fear of being labeled weak. Anxiety and depression are not weaknesses. They are illnesses.