"Chris was a true light in our lives."




Our Purpose

On October 26, 2017, Pam and Phil Martin's son, Chris, died by suicide while attending Gonzaga University.  He was just 20 years old.

Chris suffered from an attachment disorder, a mental health condition that is especially acute among adopted and foster children, and that often leads to other complicated adult mental health issues.  While Chris received extensive care throughout his life, it is clear that much is still unknown and that this area of mental health is complicated, under-researched and under-treated.

According to the NIH, 1 in 5 kids, ages 13-18 years old, experiences a severe mental disorder at some point. The alarming rate of suicide, addiction and gun violence in schools - regardless of location, background or education is - evidence of this.

These children are our future. We must radically address this crisis.

RADical Hope is dedicated to improving the lives of those suffering from or at risk for mental health issues. We are working with psychiatrists and leaders in the mental health field to identify the most effective strategy to build and distribute universally accessible resources.

We will not duplicate what is already being done and we will partner wherever it is appropriate.


"He will continue to shine bright in this world.”

Pam & Phil Martin  |  Co-Founders


Our Story

On October 26, 2017, our son Chris died by suicide while attending Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington.  He was just 20 years old.

Chris, who was adopted, suffered from mental health issues related to an attachment disorder.  Attachment disorders - including Radical Attachment Disorder (RAD) - can be a result of early childhood trauma of many types.  It can distort future stages of development, and can impact a person’s cognitive, social and emotional functioning.  As a result of this, Chris suffered periods of perceived rejection and abandonment. For most of his life, Chris was content and joyous, but at the end, he was unable to escape from an occasionally desperate state of mind.

There is much we do not know about the mental health conditions that plagued our son, despite Chris receiving treatment and counseling by professionals with expertise in these areas. What we do know is that the area of developmental trauma and associated attachment disorders is complicated, multifaceted and largely under-funded, under-researched and under-treated.  We also know that it is especially acute among adopted and foster children.  We have already connected with many experts in this field and are convinced there is much we can do to help others that are suffering silently, like Chris, with mental health challenges.

We established RADical Hope in honor of Chris. He was and will forever be a true light in our lives. Through RADical Hope, Chris will continue to shine bright in this world.

- Pam and Phil Martin, Co-Founders, RADical Hope


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