"Your life matters": Suicide prevention hotline number carved into family farm's corn maze

By Caitlin O'Kane

/ CBS News

"Your life matters." That is the message a family of farmers from Menomonie, Wisconsin wants the world to know. The Govin family always carves a unique message into their farm's corn maze. This summer, they carved an important one: information for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.

Govin's Meats & Berries shared an image of their new corn maze on Facebook, with a simple explanation behind its meaning. "We have always picked a theme that has meaning to our family and this year suicide was something we unfortunately had to face and learn about," the family wrote. "We hope to make a difference in someone's life and help them understand that they matter!"

In addition to the "your life matters" message, the corn maze also includes the National Suicide Prevention Hotline number: 1800-273-TALK. The same number was the subject of a 2017 song by Logic and Alessia Cara. The name of the song was the number.

Govin's Meats & Berries shared an image of their new corn maze on Facebook, with a simple explanation behind its meaning. Govin Family

That song made it to the Billboard Hot 100 and was performed at the Grammys, but the corn maze is getting widespread attention, too. The image received more than 1,000 shares on social media and several positive comments. "Incredible!! This is awesome! You guys are such wonderful people!" one person wrote.

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In the past, the Govins' corn maze has been NFL themed, Valentine's Day themed, and even Garth Brooks themed. But this one had the greatest significance: to raise awareness for suicide prevention.

John Govin, who owns the farm with his wife, Julie, said coming up with the idea was easy — but going through with it was not. "Fall is a fun time," Govin told WQOW. "You're really celebrating a harvest, you're celebrating everything that was good all summer long. And then to choose to do something like this … is it gonna drive people to your farm, or is it gonna drive them away?"

The Govins said it was worth the risk. "On the way to the family funeral, we both realized that this is just so much more than just trying to drive people to our farm," he said.

"Everybody is somebody's most important person," he told WQOW, choking back tears. "If we can make a difference, if we save a life this fall… that's worth it."

The corn maze will officially open on September 21 and will also have kids' section featuring anti-bullying efforts, according to WQOW.

First published on August 1, 2019 / 4:56 PM

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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Suicide prevention hotline carved into corn maze

"We have always picked a theme that has meaning to our family and this year suicide was something we unfortunately had to face and learn about," the family wrote

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