WWAY reporter’s family shares loss on national stage to raise awareness of suicide

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Bryson Furtado (Photo: Salt and Sand Creative)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — His name was Bryson Furtado.

A 20-year-old former New Hanover High School athlete who was attending East Carolina University. With bright blue eyes and a huge smile, the junior was majoring in recreational therapy as he paved a new path in Greenville.

His sister, WWAY reporter Peyton Furtado, the oldest of the two siblings, was working on January 15, a Sunday, which is her usual day off, when she received a tearful call from her mother, Kim.

When she arrived at her parents’ house in Wilmington, she learned that Bryson, her baby brother, the one with a quirky sense of humor, was dead.

The family says without warning, without any signs at all, the popular, outgoing, college student died in a way that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says is the second leading cause of death for people ages 10-34. New data from the CDC shows that suicide deaths between 2019 and 2020 decreased by 3-percent overall, however, suicide deaths for males in Bryson’s age group actually increased.

Bryson’s decision to take his own life is one his parents say they never saw coming. They say there were no signs of depression. So to all who knew and loved him, his death came without warning. Family and friends were shocked, a sentiment that was repeated during his packed funeral at Port City Community Church in Wilmington.

Suicide, without any signs, is a focus of an upcoming episode on Dr. Phil. Bryson’s parents and his sister flew to California to appear on the program in a quest to raise awareness of suicide and discuss how their faith has helped them make it through.

Tonight at 11, WWAY’s Sydney Bouchelle sits down with Bryson’s parents, Kim and Brian Furtado, and his sister, Peyton, to talk more about their goals and how they hope by sharing Bryson’s story with a nationwide audience, it can save one life and keep another family from grieving.


If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, help is available at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.8255




Categories: Local, New Hanover, News, Top Stories

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