"You should check out Nuçi's Space.", said Keith Perissi, Director of Kennesaw State's Music Business Program. "I'm in. What's Nuçi's Space?"
Phillips was a student at the University of Georgia. He came from a great family, played guitar, wrote songs, was deeply sensitive and possessed a sharp wit. He and his family fought his depression for many years. Nu
i didn't pick it nor did he have a choice in the matter. He suffered from a debilitating disease, like cancer or diabetes. In the book, A Beautiful Here, Nuçi's mother, Linda Phillips, writes:
"Our society is failing victims of depression and those who love them, by ignoring the suicide epidemic, by not investing sufficiently in research to find a better treatment, by not recognizing depression as a valid brain illness and by stigmatizing those who suffer." (p. 72)
Nuçi's Phillips took his life on Thanksgiving Day, 1996. He was 22. After the unthinkable tragedy of her son's life ending far too soon, Nuçi's mom began to think of a way to honor her son while helping others who suffer from the same illness. Nuçi's Space was born.
Their vision is to end the epidemic of suicide and to inspire a culture free of the stigma attached to brain illnesses and its sufferers by supporting a community-wide effort that focuses on education, prevention and access to appropriate treatment.
Nuçi's Space is a safe place adjacent to the UGA campus where musicians can practice, play and get help if they need it. It has become a fixture in the Athens community. Be
hind their building is an old brick tower,
once attached to St. Mary's Church that has since burned down
. Legend has it, R.E.M. played their first show in that building. The
tower is all that remains. Hallowed ground some would say. That ground has been donated to Nuçi's Space. A perfect fit.
When you walk in, you see a six-foot picture of Nuçi in the center of the main room where he can forever be with his fellow musicians. The picture has a welcoming, friendly energy to it. A Shelter From The Storm.