Five U.S. Marines killed themselves in August, according to the Marine and Family Programs Suicide Prevention Program Update. The report finds at least 39 Marines have committed suicide so far in 2012 - seven more than the total number of Marine suicides in 2011.
A breakdown of the statistics finds 38 of the 39 suicides were male, and the majority between the ages of 21 and 25. The marital status of the suicide victims breaks down relatively evenly, with 22 married and 17 single.
This month's update shows that while five Marines committed suicide, at least 12 more attempted to kill themselves.
The North County Times reported last month that the Marine Corps is researching the actions of troops who killed themselves in the days leading up to their suicides. Todd Shuttleworth, the man in charge of the Marine Corps' suicide prevention program, told the newspaper:
"We're really anxious to see what we can learn from reaching out to family members and friends and using (investigative) reports...
We want to effectively be able to teach Marines the warning signs and how to seek help early, before a situation becomes a crisis, and teach them that it is OK to ask for help."
The Corps is also looking into whether current suicide prevention programs, like Never Leave a Marine Behind, need tweaking to be more effective.