Aevidum assembly features stories, videos and original music

On Monday May 6th Aevidum founder Joe Vulopas, Aevidum staff member Maggie Cardin and Minding Your Mind speaker Francesca Pileggi came to TAHS to showcase Tyrone’s Aevidum chapter and introduce the program’s goals to the high school students.

The assembly featured many personal stories as well as original music and video productions from Tyrone students Hope Wilson and Olivia Morrison.

Aevidum staff member Maggie Cardin began the assembly by sharing her personal story of the effects of suicide. Maggie lost her brother Phil to suicide while he was in high school.  According to Cardin, her brother was smart, good looking and athletic.  No one suspected that he was suffering from severe depression.

The day he took his own life, Phil Cardin’s English teacher and Aevidum founder Joe Vulopis asked Phil what he was going to do that weekend.  Phil looked his English teacher in the eye and said “nothing.”  “But,” according to Vulopus,  “Phil knew exactly what he was going to do that weekend.”

This tragic event led to the creation of Aevidum.  “It’s too late for my brother but not for you, your friends, and family,” said Cardin.

Francesca Pileggi from the organization Minding Your Mind also lost a cousin to suicide. Looking back at the situation if she or another family member, or a friend had just said or did something his entire life could have changed. “If someone had just reached out to him he may not have taken his life”, said Peleggi.

Following Pileggi’s presentation, TAHS sophomore Hope Wilson performed an original song that she wrote specifically for the Aevidum assembly.

Wilson said that “the song was inspired by someone in my family that has gone through a lot of hard times recently and I wrote it to hopefully inspire someone or make them feel a little better.”

At the end of the assembly, TAHS senior Olivia Morrison premiered a video that she produced that was also inspired by the Aevidum message.  According to Morrison, the video was created to “promote awareness and change in our school and to inspire people to treat each other in a positive way.”

Wilson’s song and Morrison’s video can both be viewed on the Eagle Eye website.

Aevidum founder Volopus closed the assembly by reminding the audience that “every life matters.” Those who take their life are wiping out everything they could have offered the world.

“If you or any of your friends show signs of depression or any other mental health issues remember to get them to an adult as soon as you can for help”, said Vulopis.  When asked if they would be willing to put aside their work to help a student in need, all the teachers at the assembly raised their hands.

“Remember, there are many people here who can help. It’s important to reach out to an adult who can get you or your friend help,” said Vulopas.

Volupus’s hope is that the students at Tyrone will step up and embrace Aevidum’s “I’ve got your back” message use their gifts to create a culture of care throughout the entire school.

Students interested in joining the Tyrone chapter of Aevidum can sign up by visiting the Guidance Office.