RADical Hope was established in honor of Chris Martin. On October 26, 2017, while Chris was a Junior at Gonzaga University, he died by suicide.
Chris 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 which can impact a person’s cognitive, social and emotional functioning. For most of his life, Chris was content and joyous, but in the end, he was unable to escape from an occasionally desperate state of mind.
Chris was an adventurer, the first to dance, and the first to help a friend in need. He loved photography, and from behind the lens Chris saw beauty in the world. Without fail, Chris Martin was compassionate and kind.
Pam and Phil Martin established RADical Hope in honor of their adopted son, Chris. Chris exhibited kindness and empathy in everything he did. Through RADical Hope, Pam and Phil honor their son's legacy by working to improve the lives of those like Chris who are suffering from mental health issues.
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