Mike Danahey | September 17, 2014
A heart-wrenching film from three 2014 University of Notre Dame graduates took top honors in the short documentary category at this year’s Sunset Film Festival in Los Angeles.
In The Suicide Disease, Katie Mattie, Vincent Moore, and William Neal tell the story of Frances Shavers, who worked at Notre Dame as chief-of-staff and special assistant to University President Father John Jenkins, C.S.C., before she was diagnosed with Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN). The malady causes excruciating facial pain, so much so that a significant number of those afflicted resort to killing themselves.
Shavers is not among them, however, and the students’ film captures her struggle with the disease, her fight to find relief, and her strong support network of friends and family.