|Any organization in the Fort McCoy work force that
needs suicide awareness training can arrange it through Fort McCoy’s
Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP).
Scott Zaehler, the installation’s ASAP program manager who also serves
as the Suicide Prevention program manager, said the training is an
Scott Zaehler, Fort McCoy Suicide
Prevention program manager, teaches a Suicide Awareness course
to Civilian Personnel Advisory Center staff.
(Photo by Rob Schuette)
“The Army recognizes that the people who serve the people in
uniform also have a need for this information,” Zaehler said. “They
work long hours, have stress and heartache as well.”
Many people at Fort McCoy also have dual-status employment through
the military-technician program, he said.
The new video “Shoulder to Shoulder: Finding Strength and Hope
Together” is included in the one-hour training block.
Zaehler said the video was designed for the entire Army Family and
includes real stories from or about Soldiers, Family members, and
The Shoulder to Shoulder video is available at
Zaehler said he can instruct the course or show supervisors where
the training is available online so they can tailor it to their
Fort McCoy has a number of resources to support the Suicide
Awareness Program, including master resilience training (MRT) and
the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, which addresses overall
wellness for the Army community.
“If you think a person is in imminent danger of committing suicide,
call 911,” Zaehler said.
The Employee Assistance Program (EAP), which is part of the ASAP
offerings, offers free short-term, limited counseling for Department
of the Army (DA) civilians to address a variety of adult-living
For more information, call Zaehler at 608-388-2441. Zaehler said as
EAP coordinator he also can refer DA civilians to outside counseling
resources, if necessary.
Army Community Service (ACS) offers resiliency training for
civilians and Family Members as part of its MRT program.
“Resiliency is the ability to bounce back from adverse conditions,”
said Lorie Retzlaff at a recent Building Strong Relationships
As part of resilience training, “People learn to discuss their
problems assertively, respond constructively to positive experiences
and praise (other people) effectively.”
For more information about resiliency training, call Retzlaff at
ACS, who is a master resilience trainer and provides resiliency
training, at 608-388-3505.
Another resource is the chaplains who serve in the installation’s
Religious Support Office (RSO), Zaehler said. For more information
about counseling and referral for spiritual issues, call the RSO at
National resources also are available, Zaehler said. The National
Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
Press “1” for veterans or civilians can stay on the line to talk
The Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) also offers the DVA
Families at Ease program that works with Family members who become
aware of a veteran’s post-deployment difficulties and supports their
efforts to find help for veterans.
The website is
The Global Assessment Test for DA civilians is available at
is a self-appraisal designed to boost personal growth, strengthen
relationships and give people better coping skills for dealing with
potentially traumatic events. The test is voluntary for civilians,
but mandatory for Army personnel, Zaehler said.
Other suicide prevention websites include
This is the Public Health Command Army Knowledge Online site with
training folders for Soldiers, civilians and Family members and
includes other products as well.
For more information about suicide awareness training, call Zaehler