"I screamed no and smashed the phone ... I did not want to believe it."

Mother-of-six Delthia Stimpson cries as she describes the horrific moment she learned her beloved daughter Bronwyn was dead.

At just 16, Bronwyn had taken her own life.

Three years on, Stimpson has only recently found the strength to talk about the tragedy. A milestone she marked by getting a tattoo of her daughter on her back.


Now she is using her experience to help organise a bike ride in Tauranga for Mental Health Awareness week.

"If I can just help one teenager, one mother, by sharing Bronwyn's story, then doing this is so worthwhile."

Stimpson said she was aware Bronwyn was struggling with her mental health when she began self-harming.

"I comforted her and tried to talk to her. As a mother I just wanted to be there for her, to help her. I didn't realise the extent of her depression, just how bad it was, as I didn't understand depression or where to seek help."

Bronwyn's sudden death rocked the family. Stimpson sank into such despair that she herself felt suicidal.

"It was only when I went to my doctor and got help through mental health services I felt able to go on ... I understand so much more now about mental health. I just want to urge other parents to arm themselves with knowledge."

She also urges parents to "dig deep" with their teenagers.

"Go digging. They are good at hiding. Bronwyn seemed a happy girl, well-liked at school, a good gymnast, beautiful. Talk to your children, really talk to them about what is going on."


The ride, which takes place on October 15, hopes to attract more than 300 riders.

Delthia Stimpson and her partner Neil Philpott are helping organise a bike ride to raise awareness about mental health. PHOTO/Andrew Warner
Delthia Stimpson and her partner Neil Philpott are helping organise a bike ride to raise awareness about mental health. PHOTO/Andrew Warner

Owner of Prestige Motorcycles Callum Beckett said he wanted to do something to "break down stereotypes about mental health".

He himself suffers from an anxiety disorder which used to cause panic attacks.

"Men, in particular, are terrible about talking about things, but when they go for rides together they often open up."

Beckett says as an employer he encourages his staff to talk openly about mental health.

"Talking about these issues is something we are all responsible for."

When: Sunday 15th October. Meet at 9am, briefing at 9.45am, depart at 10am
Where: Meet at Prestige Motorcycles, Newton St, Mount Maunganui.
Route: Head through Papamoa and along to first stop in Matata, then along Lake Rotoiti stopping in Hamurana for sausage sizzle lunch, and then back towards Tauranga through Pyes Pa.
How: No entry fee. Donation to Mental Health Foundation.

If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.
Or if you need to talk to someone else:
• Lifeline: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
• Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• Youthline: 0800 376 633
• Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (Mon-Fri 1pm to 10pm. Sat-Sun 3pm-10pm)
• Depression helpline: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)
• Rainbow Youth: (09) 376 4155
• Samaritans 0800 726 666