Submitted by: GC
My Tribute: Richard F. Demoss III
April 1988 to June 2011
Ricky was born on Easter Sunday April 2, 1988. He had a great childhood. He traveled to the islands, went to the beach and got to Disney on family vacations. He was a good friend to anyone. He stood up for the underdog. Always there with a smile on his face and a helping hand. He had a fantastic sense of humor. He loved doing impressions of people. He was great with children, animals and his family. His true passion was music. He left us on June 13, 2011 at the age of 23.
Submitted by: GC
My Tribute: Scott Shawn Schultz
March 20, 1987 to June 11, 2011
My son Scott came to me on the first day of spring 1987. My first born and my only son. All of your bios sound so familiar. My son kept telling me that the girl he was dating kept pressuring him to try drugs. It was so out of character for Scott. Truly a level headed boy and would not even think of even having a beer when he was out with friends, but for the love a beautiful girl who he confided constantly leaving him at parties and restaurants because of his constant refusal to do drugs with her. I tried but he finally succumbed, finally to heroin, only on it for 2 1/2 years but lost his fight after being clean for 9 months on June 11, 2011. I am devastated and sometimes beg the Lord to take me as the pain I wake up to along with horrifying panic attacks are so overwhelming. I had to resign and go on disability for my severe depression. Lost a good job along with medical. I pray for all of you along for Scott and all of our angels. Thank you all for sharing. God help us all!
Submitted by: Marie Minnich
My Tribute: Mary Mickelson
December 1976 to August 2009
Marie Minnich lost her 32 year old daughter, Mary Mickelsen, to a heroin overdose on the night of August 18, 2009. After 5 days in coma, Mary succumbed and passed on August 23, 2009. Mary’s 16 year-struggle as an addict consumed both her life and Marie’s life. During these years of watching her daughter struggle with the torment of addiction, Marie formed strong opinions about current Drug policy in the United States, and is irrevocably convinced that drug addiction is a health issue, not a criminal issue. There is an urgent need for humane medical treatment for addicts,
Although having no prior formal educational background in medicine, or psychology, these conclusions are based on the experience of living with her daughter’s addiction. Marie’s formal educational background includes a Bachelor of Science in Interior Design, and she is a candidate for Masters of Science in Interior Design. Although immersed in the Design world by vocation, she in no way feels that her professional vocation is incompatible with her newer avocation working with Broken-no-more. It is Marie’s sincere desire to help effect changes to current Drug policy, as well as help transform society’s attitudes towards suffering addicts.
Submitted by: GC
My Tribute: Stephen Michael Spory
September 16, 1983 to December 8, 2012
How do you describe someone you love so much with a few words? Stephen was my son. He was fun-loving and had tons of friends He loved Michigan football, basketball and hockey. He loved to party and absolutely loved Christmas. Outside, he was confident and thoughtful but inside I think he felt he wasn’t “good enough” which I believe came from having no contact with his biological father since he was 4 yrs old. So to mask this, he drank. He was the life of any party. He knew he had a problem and was going to start treatment. We thought we were going to have time. He died after having a week of “flu-like” symptoms. In reality, his liver shut down. The medical examiner told me he’d never seen a 29 year old with a liver this bad. We never thought his drinking was killing him. . He was 29. I still hear his voice when he would call, “Hey mom!” I miss him every day.
Submitted by: GC
My Tribute: Jamie Lee King
October 19, 1982 – June 6, 2009
Jamie was born in Guam 1982. She was born with such amazing spirit, something that would sustain her thru many obstacles in life. She was smart, funny, intuitive, lived life to he fullest She loved everything Irish. She is very loved and missed. Jamie Lee King
Submitted by: Margaret Alexander
My Tribute: Glen Tyson Alexander
February 17, 1987 ~ July 2, 2010
Glen always said, He didn’t have a purpose in life. He did. He does.
Glen was born in Whittier, CA on February 17, 1987. He was the youngest of six children (2 brothers and 3 sisters). He wanted to be born feet first, but instead they did an emergency c-section. He was the third one of my children to be diagnosed as ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and was started on medication in second grade. By eighth grade he didn’t want to take meds anymore. He told me, “I know they make me behave better, but I don’t like the way they make me feel”. He always dealt with anxiety and depression and was diagnosed bipolar as a young adult.
When he was three years old, he start talking to me about his imaginary farm or barn and all his animals. He told me he would take me there some day, but it was far-far away and we would have to fly. Glen always loved animals, especially dogs and reptiles (snakes being his favorite reptile). When he died he left a big fish tank, with colorful fish, big rocks, and a castle in it.
Whatever his problems were, they didn’t keep his family and friends from loving him. He had a unforgettable smile, a very funny sense of humor, and a way of living life to the fullest. He had his own words for things and we called them “Glenism’s”. He was soft spoken and a good listener. Glen loved kids and they loved him, especially his nieces and nephews. Glen had compassion and a unique understanding of others and what they were going through. Many of his friends miss hanging out with Glen and having those conversations they shared about life. They also miss his way of thinking up crazy things to do to have fun.
Glen was all boy and loved the outdoors. He met most of friends doing guy things; skateboarding, bicycling, dirt bike riding, riding go-peds, snowboarding, rock climbing, hiking, fishing, hunting, target shooting, and so on. When he got older he added motorcycles and a truck to his collection of toys with wheels. He didn’t like big get together’s or going to parties Hugh crowds overwhelmed him.
Glen lost his grandfather in ’96, whom he was very close to. In ’98 Glen’s father passed away from lung cancer. Glen was only 11. Both these deaths were very hard for Glen. He really missed having that male figure in his life. Glen had a natural gift when it came to mechanical skills. He just instinctively knew how to repair things without any formal training. The garage was one of Glen’s favorite places to hang out with his friends. Often they would bring over their various motorized toys to have Glen work on them.
Glen had his second motorcycle accident in 2008. He almost lost his right leg and was hospitalized for a month. During that time he had five surgeries and was on the strongest of pain medications. Up until then, the only drug Glen had done was to smoke marijuana. He was very anti anything else and the marijuana helped him with his anxiety. Glen missed not being able to do all the physical activities that he had done before that accident.
I am sure Glen didn’t commit suicide, but he became careless with his life. Late in the night (June 30, 2010), he did a speed ball (heroin and meth). This was something new for Glen and his body just could not handle it. Glen was sick all the next day. He just moaned. I had never seen him like this before, and asked him several times if he wanted me to take him to the hospital or call 911. He would say, no. He said, he was hot and I told him the air conditioner was already on. He had me aim the fan directly at him and then said, that was better. I stayed home all that day in case he changed his mind or needed anything. All he wanted was water. I went in to say goodnight at about 10:30 and he asked for a cup of hot tea. This was meaningful to me later because Glen normally didn’t drink hot tea. My dad who passed away in ’96 loved hot tea and I had always kept it on hand for him. I believe Glen passed away shortly after that and I would like to think my dad came to greet him. As I mentioned earlier, my dad and Glen were very close. Glen was pronounced dead by paramedics on Friday morning, July 2, 2010.
The autopsy revealed that the secondary cause of death was that Glen had an enlarged heart. His brother Steven said, “He wasn’t surprised to hear that. He always knew Glen had a big heart”.
I loved Glen so much and he loved me. I am so proud to be his mom. There won’t be a day that goes by that I won’t think of Glen. I find strength knowing, he is at peace and happy in heaven now and look forward to the day I will see him again.
Glen was searching for a purpose in his life and wondered why he was ever born. He could never understand why I tried so hard to help him, and thought I was wasting my time. I could only see all he had to offer.
Glen wrote some notes after his motorcycle accident in 2008. I believe these notes were not an accident, but a part of God’s plan for Glen’s life.
Some Clips from Glen’s notes he wrote after his motorcycle accident in 2008:
“God, I concede this time to become closer to You.”
“I want You to be strong within me. Forgive me Father for I have sinned. I’m asking You God, give me strength to fulfill your word. I need help. I want You in my heart where ever I go. Shield me from evil. Give me life. I’m not truly happy without You.”
“Life’s too short to not do the things you love. Sometimes the worst thing is the best thing. It shows you reality.”
“Life is full of ups and downs. How you deal with downs will prepare you to do well.”
“Even though I was doing wrong. Let me heal O Lord. Give me life. Show me the way.”
“You don’t always get what you want. But if you try, sometimes, you get what you need.”
“I asked, if there is a God show me! This prayer felt strong in my heart. I trusted in You. You didn’t let me down.”
“Let me clear my head. Rest my eyes. Bless my family and friends. Because they got me. ‘No worries mate’. Let Your light shine. God bless. I’m sorry mom. Let me shine. Patience is love.”
Submitted by: David Humes
My Tribute: The disease of addiction takes good people to bad places. In Greg's case he served time in prison. A little more than a week after he was released, we had a family skate that had already been planned. That is what is pictured. Greg skated with an incredible freedom. He was engaged with all of his family. If was as if he had never left us. He helped our three year old grandnephew skate. I felt as if I had he had reclaimed himself, the real Greg. He talked equally with his aunts and uncles, his cousins and the younger children. That day was as if he had never been away.
Date: November 20, 2013
Author: Gary Cullen
Source: Broken No More
Here is our YouTube video of our Casualties of the War on Drugs.
Date: November 20, 2013
Author: Gina DelFavero
Source: Blairsville Dispatch
Drugs have become a high-profile problem in the area, and Indiana County officials have responded by holding a series of awareness meetings in several towns.
Susan Kelly of Indiana is only too aware of the toll associated with drug abuse. She lost her son, Daniel “Hat” Cernic, to a heroin overdose in 2005. He was 23 years old.
To Read the Entire Article, Click Here
Date: November 14, 2013
Author: Denise Cullen
Certified Grief Recovery Specialist and CEO, Broken No More
Source: The Huffington Pot
As a mother of a son who died from an accidental drug overdose, I was encouraged to see CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta's report of a real-life overdose reversal using the opioid-antidote naloxone. The report brought valuable information to people who may not have been aware of this underutilized, life -saving tool.
My only child, Jeff, died in 2008 at the age of 27 after a twelve-year struggle with substance use disorder. Our family fought hard, struggled alongside him, doing everything we possibly could to help him achieve remission. He died anyway. Naloxone could have saved him.
To Read the Entire Article Click Here.