Can a Man (and a Bug) Drive Out Suicide?
by Glenn Holsten
A MAN, A BUG and A MISSION is a short film that documents the first leg of OC87 Recovery Diaries’ Editor in Chief Gabriel Nathan’s ambitious road trip to raise suicide awareness and prevention. Using Herbie as the conversation catalyst, Gabe recently left his hometown of Philadelphia to embark on a journey up the East Coast, where he recorded interactions with every day folk, including politicians, first responders, suicide loss survivors and attempt survivors, clinicians—about mental, suicide prevention, and, yes, how this special Love Bug fits in to that discussion.
Gabe’s family has been touched by suicide—his aunt (his father’s sister) Rena Nathan, died by suicide. Gabe he has made it his life’s mission to spread awareness about prevention. He is a board member of Prevent Suicide PA, and his car is branded with the number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK), part of Prevent Suicide PA’s #driveoutsuicide initiative.
Please enjoy this engaging preview of his adventure, which documents Gabe’s departure. The night before he leaves, he has a touching interview with his father about their family’s loss. The morning of departure, he is given blessings (and some strong tech support!) by his wife, Abi, and his sweet children. He is also given a special send off by his dear friend Stephanie, who shares some very wise words of reflection about her personal journey losing her mother to suicide.
Gabe has had a long and successful relationship with Herbie, as we’ve documented in this OC87 Recovery Diaries feature. This road trip seems to artfully blend his two passions. As Gabe explains, “There’s a scene in The Love Bug where Herbie tries to throw himself off the Golden Gate Bridge. And I knew I had to use Herbie for suicide prevention He’s the only car in motion picture history that tries to kill himself.”
Part road trip, part interview documentary, part introspective diary, A Man, A Bug and a Mission is a delicious teaser for the full-length film, which is currently in post-production. This heartfelt video captures Gabe’s unique blend of warmth, understanding, humor and compassion. He and Herbie make a disarmingly charming couple, as they seek truth and spread hope (and important prevention information) up the East Coast.