Why Did I Attempt To Break This Record?
In 2008, I sat in my car on the side of the road in Northern Arizona with a gun in my mouth, one-second away from pulling the trigger and ending my life. In the previous weeks and months leading up to this dreadful day, I had made horrible mistakes and a series of poor choices that lead to losing my family, all of my possessions, my livelihood and most importantly my self respect. In the seconds before pulling the trigger I cried out to God for help and said, ‘I don’t want to do this. If you help me through this I won’t give up, will deal with the consequences of my actions and use all of this bad stuff to help others and to make a difference, so that no one else has to go through what I am going through right now.’
That was it. I made a decision right then and there to put the gun down and to not give up. What happened next was to be the beginning of a mission that continues to this day and since 2012 has helped good cause across America raise more than $2 Million Dollars. With over 1000 concerts under my belt, 200 of which being for charity, I have helped raise money and awareness for a wide variety of causes that include military veterans and their families, equine and pet rescues, food banks, non-profit theatres, suicide and crisis prevention, special needs children and adults, high schools and colleges, and many more.
Like all of my concerts, my 2016 Guinness World Records attempt was intended to help boost awareness for my mission and message that no matter how bad you think things are, how bad your mistakes have been, or how hopeless you feel, suicide is never the answer and that there is always hope. I am living proof of this fact and my comeback story is a shining example of how you can turn things around by using your mistakes or 'perceived' obstacles to help others and make a difference. My message is clear; follow your dreams, believe in yourself and never give up!
I attempted to break this record in 2015 but was stopped near the end due to circumstances that were outside of my control. I could have easily given up and thrown in the towel but decided to keep going and devoted another year of my life to planning and executing my 2016 attempt.
Although I am disappointed that many of the venues and causes along my 2016 route failed to fully capitalize on the tremendous opportunity of hosting a Guinness World Records attempt while also using it to raise money and awareness for an important cause within their community, in many ways it is just another example of how when things don't go exactly as planned you must keep going. Before, during and after this year's attempt I received several messages from people who shared how they were in a similar situation as me but learned about my comeback and decided that they could do it too and to not end their lives. To me, that is worth playing to several less than full rooms during my attempt.
2017 will find me releasing a book about my journey from total collapse to comeback, including my two Guinness World Records attempts. In addition, I will continue to use my music and concerts to help raise money and awareness for good causes, while also beginning to speak to audiences of all ages with the goal of becoming a leading advocate for suicide prevention.
As part of the above initiative, I have already begun planning my next Guinness World Record title attempt for 'Fastest to Play a Concert in all 50 States.'
You may learn more about my story here • Scott Helmer's 'Road to Guinness'
Scott Helmer • December 18, 2016