Kimberly Schneider

Submitted by: Jeanette Schneider
Born: 1973
Died: 2011
My Tribute: Kim was a beautiful, kind, gentle soul who struggled with mental illness and addictions. Combining my efforts with others who have lost their children to problems such as these, I hope to make a difference and perhaps save other children who are struggling in life with the same issues.

Benjamin John Burke

Submitted by: Theresa Burke
Born: 1984
Died: 2012
My Tribute: Ben was my son–a shy, humble young man who battled heroin addiction bravely and openly.
He did everything humanly and spiritually possible to get well, but the disease took him after a 5 year battle. His family does not believe his overdose was an accident. He gave up. He was exhausted and depleted and had just completed 6 months clean. He had restored everything that mattered most…his friends, family and his God. Rather than risk losing everything again, he killed his addict with his favorite weapon–heroin. Ben never had a choice after the first time he tried it. His words: “My brain is wired to kill me.” Heroin took his body but not his soul. May God forgive anyone who says that a heroin addict deserves to die. Would you say that to a person fighting cancer? It is the same. Ben didn’t want to die, but dying became a better choice than living one more day as a heroin addict. Thats how much fun he was having! I miss my son so much, the grief still takes me down like a grenade when I least expect it. I admire Ben’s courage and faith. On the morning he died he went to church and to his favorite AA meeting, he had been praying the rosary for months and had gone to confession. He called us to say goodbye, but we didn’t realize what he was preparing to do. He came home to die while we were on vacation. He died on Palm Sunday 2012. His body laid on my kitchen floor for four days before it was found. We continue to heal as we realize that all of our prayers were answered, just not in the way that we thought! Ben is clean and whole and finally free.

Joshua R. Giroux

Submitted by: Devin Giroux
Born: 1989
Died: 2013
My Tribute: Josh was my beautiful, kind, funny, loving little brother. He was clean for 8 months when he decided to use one last time. The loss of him is unbearable to me, the rest of my family & his friends. He left behind his parents, 3 siblings, a girlfriend, a dog that loved him, friends who became family, and 4 loving grandparents. At his wake and funeral, people I had never even seen before were coming up to me telling me stories about things Josh had done for them. I hold on to those memories. Because although he was an addict, he was a good person. You have to be born like that. The world is forever lacking now that he is gone.


Submitted by: Cynthia
Born: 1984
Died: 2013
My Tribute: My beautiful son Andrew.
His life ended on 12/24/13, a heroine overdose.
He was a joy and a blessing. He made everyone laugh – he was a good hearted man, caring and compassionate
To know him was to love him.


Submitted by: Auntie Karen
Born: 1995
Died: 2013
My Tribute: My niece Cassie died from an overdose of heroin, far away from home, at the apartment of a misguided relative. We will never know the truth of how this happened or the violence she suffered before her passing. Praying for peace for my sister, Cassie’s mother, as well as for all of you.

Ben J Podein

Submitted by: Sue Podein
Born: 1987
Died: 2013
My Tribute: My son Ben passed away this past labor day weekend at our home alone from an over dose of heroin. Ben was great father to his 2 year old son and was trying to over come his addition and went through rehab twice (before he even knew he had a child). He also had a job that he liked very much, his co-workers said they were all very close and like family to each other. Unfortunately, he just got pulled back to as he called it the green eyed monster. We miss him everyday, we cry a lot and are trying to make sense out of a senseless situation. Ben wrote a lot about this drug and the control it had over him. The devil took him out but God took him home.

Zachary Dennis Gys

Submitted by: Louise
Born: 1989
Died: 2013
My Tribute: My beloved son, Zachary died on July 19, 2013 from a methadone overdose. He was trying to get his life in order and had experienced 60 days of recovery prior to his passing. He was a wonderful child with a great sense of humor and a kind word for everyone. A gifted athlete, with a passion for hockey, he hurt his ankle in a high school game and a friend gave him a Percocet to ease the pain. He was immediately hooked. He graduated from Percocet to Oxy to Heroin. He tried many times to fight his addiction but more often than not would succumb to the monster within. Although I know that addiction is a terminal disease, I truly thought he would overcome it….he was such fierce and competitive warrior. I can still hear his voice though it’s only a whisper now. This pain in my heart and soul will never go away. I miss him each and every day. I will continue to fight for those who can’t and hope that I live to see the day when addiction is treated as a disease and not a moral failure. Rest in peace, my sweet prince.

Adam Chamberlin Parker

Submitted by: Kathy Parker
Born: 1991
Died: 2013
My Tribute: Adam Chamberlin Parker
June 4, 1991 – July 1, 2013

Adam was an inspiration to many, his mom included.  He was very loving, and had a soft spot in his heart for helping the elderly and enjoyed being in the moment spending time with children.  He had this BIG grin of a smile that just lit up the room when he walked in, a great sense of humor and always made others laugh, and just feel better once they were with him.  He had this very agile, strategic ability that came natural to him, both in athletic sports and in mental challenges like chess or poker.  He will always be remembered for his empathy for the underdog, always took care for the ones left behind.  Adam will be greatly missed by his family and large circle of close friends, and so many lives that he touched with his inspiration…yet will never be forgotten.

A sweet friend of mine told me that she sees Adam playing a much bigger part in the scheme of things here in this physical plane, than anything he could have done if he would have lived.  I have always been very spiritual, but since Adam’s passing I see things spiritually in such a different perspective and strongly feel the ‘push’ or need to explore much deeper into the after-life.  I also feel that through my exploration, I will find a much deeper, richer relationship with my son than ever before, or would have experienced if he was still here with me.  For this realization, I feel blessed.

“Adam, my Love, your beautiful smile and warm hugs will forever be felt by me.  Your immense kindness and compassion for others truly inspires me.  We had a very special closeness and bond between us, that I will never forget.  Your energy and spirit will always be present, and fond memories of you will forever be spoken.  I will always feel your heart close to mine….I love you so so much, Honey!” ~mom

Denny M. Bristow

Submitted by: Sherri Bristow Boster
Born: 1986
Died: 2013
My Tribute: Denny fought his addiction hard which started with oxytocin and ended with heroin. Denny was greatly loved and is missed by many. Gone to young.

David “DJ” Griffiths

Submitted by: GC
Born: 1978
Died: 2011
My Tribute: David “DJ” Griffiths
Born: November 28, 1978
Died: February 17, 2011
Dj was my friend and father of our 7 year old son. He had a kind heart, and loved his family very much. He got hurt at work and was given Oxycontin. He became addicted, got clean, and relapsed 6 months later, never to wake the next morning. He is missed greatly everyday and words cannot express the loss we have suffered because of addiction.