Bryan says social media provide forums for people to talk about crisis situations and connect with people in ways that were not previously possible.
And that, says Bryan, is a great protective measure.
Good and bad
Public health researcher Dr. Joseph A. Boscarino thinks Facebook posts can be therapeutic for those who are suffering. It has been proved, he says, that talking about traumatic events is a first step toward recovery, and for some, it may be easier to talk on Facebook.
But Boscarino, a Vietnam veteran, worries that the Facebook environment is so open and uncontrolled that the potential for a negative reaction is very real.
"It can go both ways, obviously," he says. "There could be a negative side if the victims are fragile. It could push them in the wrong direction."
What if someone writes a post on a suicidal soldier's page, "You signed up for war fighting, not babysitting"?
"People who are hard-core militarists or pacifists may not be that sympathetic," says Boscarino, who did a tour of Vietnam in 1965 and knows first-hand what it was like to face ugliness from the public.
"Rejection is hard to take. It was in Vietnam. And it is now," he says.
But he recognizes the potential for Facebook and says he hopes people figure out how to use it beneficially for service members and their families.
Alice Franks, who heads the National Alliance to End Veteran Suicide, calls Facebook sites for military suicides wretched but worthy clubs.
"Depending upon what a survivor is seeking, these sites can help create connectivity for a community of survivors who may not reach each other under other circumstances," she says.
The group attempts to reach survivors who have progressed in their own grief to a point where they are ready and willing to move to action.
"Any tool," says Franks, "that causes dialogue to happen around the concern of veteran/military suicide is good."
On July 18, Erik Jorgensen, 26, texted his mom. He said he was a "waste of oxygen on this Earth."
And then he went missing.
Cindy Crow began driving from her home in California to Boise, Idaho, where her son was stationed with the Army National Guard. Before that, he'd spent a year as an Army private clearing roads laced with makeshift bombs in Afghanistan.
Crow knew that her son suffered from post-traumatic stress. She knew that she had to get to Idaho before something terrible happened.
As people began looking for Jorgensen, his sister started a Facebook page to help.
A photo of Erik was posted; he was described as 6 feet 1 inches tall and 240 pounds. He had dark blond/light brown hair and blue eyes. He had PTSD and did not have his medication with him. No one knew what clothes he was wearing that day, but he was driving his jacked-up white Dodge Ram with black grilles and rims. License plate number: S58329.
They asked anyone who spotted Jorgensen to call the Boise police department immediately.
The post was shared instantly by people all across America. Some asked what unit he was with and where he was last seen. Others just wrote messages of support and love for Jorgensen's family.
Staff Sgt. Maggie Haswell of Boise came across the Facebook page early Saturday morning. Jorgensen had been missing for two days.
"What the hell," Haswell thought. "This is happening right here."