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on September 22, 2010
I really enjoyed this book. While not the most literary writer, Gordon Smith writes with a directness and simplicity that is very compelling to read. He wrote movingly of his feelings for his family, particularly his son Garrett who passed.

I also was interested in his description of the political process in getting a mental health care law passed. He provided a true insider's perspective.

I'm taking off one star because I wish he had written more about how his other two children handled Garrett's death. Perhaps he was trying to preserve their privacy, but even a fleeting reference would have been appreciated.

I'm not taking off a star for this, but will note that it's also quite a short book. In Kindle terms, it's 1255-whatever-they-are long, while most books that I read are around 5000-whatever-they-are. For the bargain Kindle price, though, I was not at all disappointed, and felt it well worth the money.
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on December 28, 2011
Senator Smith shares a beautiful story and a message about his son's suicide. I lost my brother to suicide a year ago. This book is another step along my way through recovery. Thank you Senator for making a difference for your son, Garrett, and my brother, David.

Dan Nasharr
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on August 4, 2015
Great book. Good insight from a parents perspective on mental illness.
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on January 11, 2007
This was a heartfelt telling of one family's struggle with coping with their feelings of guilt in missing the clues to their son's severe depression, which ultimately lead to his taking his own life. It shows us how easy it is for those closest to someone to not see how much that person is struggling with their depression, and how a family can heal after the loss of that child. Keep the tissues nearby, but no matter your politics, you have compassion for the depth of dispair this family reached in dealing with their loss. For a public figure such as Sen. Gordon Smith , writing this book exposing their heartache, took a great deal of courage, but was a big step in their healing.
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on September 12, 2010
I highly recomemd this book for those dealing with the loss of a young family member to suicide.
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VINE VOICEon April 16, 2006
I must admit. I didn't vote for Gordon Smith last time around. As a "dyed-in-the-wool" Democrat, I usually support my party candidates. Yet, he was re-elected, and is currently serving as a Republican senator from Oregon. In 2003, his son Garrett committed suicide, ending a long struggle with depression. Immediately my interest was peaked, as someone who suffering from episodic depression from time to time. With his usual composure, Senator Smith remained quiet about this intensely personal matter. And now, a few years later, Gordon Smith has written a book about his son, a stunning, personal memoir, "Remembering Garrett".

The book is partially a recounting of the amazingly normal life of Garrett Smith, the struggles he had with dyslexia, and the few brief successes he had with his church. Smith writes as lovingly and honestly as any parent could; reflecting upon his son's life with a familial quality that is pleasing to read. What even surprised me more about the book was how Smith wrote about questioning himself after Garrett's suicide. Smith has always appear strong and resolute; this event clearly shook him to the core.

Much too often, it appears that our politicians act without much forethought of the consequences of their actions. Clearly, this has changes Senator Smith's thoughts and actions as he has become a tireless advocate for the prevention of depression. While clearly parents who have suffered the loss of a child will relish every page of this book, most everyone, especially those of us who experience depression, will find some gems of wisdom in this beautiful tribute to Garrett. This book is a must-read.
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on May 12, 2007
Senator Smith's book is an easy, well written read about a wonderful son, a close knit family and the joys and heartache of life. The overlay is realizing that ones child is battling mental illness before you the parent fully understands. Senator Smith lovingly talks about Garrett's "angel mother" and his self doubts (and guilt) about what he should have realized; what he could have done better. The book ends with a reach out to encourage others in the same situation to recognize the signs of depression and to get help early. By telling his family's story Senator Smith honors Garrett, travels the road of healing, and brings compassion to the thousands of families that find themselves in the same boat after a precious child's suicide. You really don't want to miss this book!
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on March 8, 2016
I wanted to learn more about Garrett I felt it was too much about Gordon.
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on June 29, 2006
The book was excellent. Very well written. An excellent story and eye opener of where depression and mental illness can lead if unchecked. I thouroughly enjoyed the book and will re-read it many times. cp
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