Submitted by: Karmen Cance, (mom)
My Tribute: My son was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2009. Before that he was intelligent, athletic, fun, very loving, humble, kind, giving, hard working and always helping someone in need. After rehab, because of drinking, he was clean and sober for three years, but took a lot of medications. In 2012 he met an older woman of who was an addict, of which is when the drinking started again, while on those medications. He started going into psychotic episodes, both drinking and doing prescription medications. She would constantly call the police on him, so he was in and out of jail, and we had him in and out of rehab. One of the last rehabs, he admitted to us trying crack and smoking heroin, but said he hated the feeling and would never do it again.I worked hard for 4 years trying to him the help he needed and to get him away from her. Each time he was done with her, she would pull him back into her life again. We moved across the state, back to west Michigan, to get him out of the Flint area. There is very minimal help for those with bipolar with addiction problems. The system just doesn’t care. The answer is to just throw them in jail. He moved back home with us and started drinking a lot again. I was constantly checking his room for anything and everything, never any indications of heroin. He would go some weekends to visit her, she was relentless and he was gullible to her deceit. It was getting so bad, and I was getting tired. The last time he left to go to Flint in Feb. 19, 2016, he gave me a big kiss and hug and said how much he loved me, never to see him alive again. He had lost his job, was extremely depressed, and thought he was a disappointment. I wish I would of some how stopped him. I talked with him on the 22nd and he was out of money, couldn’t come home until he received his last check. On the 24th he received his last check and income tax. But didn’t come home. My husband talked with hm on the 27th, he seemed fine, was getting his oil changed. Seen he posted on Facebook on the 28th, feeling anxious, need to get fresh air, relaxing Sunday. Then on the 29th, no phone or Facebook activity. I had a terrible feeling about that, and on March 1st, both my husband and I tried to contact him, went right to voice mail. After relentlessly trying to contact him, we got a phone call at 10:20 pm. Saying he had died, 16 hours after his death. They said there was a needle on the floor but was under investigation because her son had died in Dec. of the same cause. They said there was no indication that he was a user and probably a one time thing. Since his death, the Flint Police will not return my phone calls if it’s still under investigation, found out that she had performed CPR on him early in the morning without calling 911 and went to work because he was breathing again. Returned home a 1/2 hour to find him gone. It took 7 months to get his autopsy and death certificate stating he died of mixed drug toxicity, heroin. The medical examiner won’t talk with me, I’ve asked for the medical report several times with no response. Timelines don’t add up, he tried it years ago, but did not do heroin. Alcohol was his drug of choice. Yet no alcohol in his system. Over 1200.00 dollars spent in 4 days, don’t know if he did it to himself, because of how his life was to him or if it was done to him. I sit here everyday just thinking, and trying to wrap my brain around what has happened, why I’m not getting any answers, or if the Flint Police are just dismissing it because he had a record and it was heroin. The pain inside of myself is so intense, I break down everyday. We were so close, he was my beautiful baby boy. I keep asking why? I prayed all the time for the lord to help him, but instead took him from me. Is it so selfish to want some answers and my son back? He was just 29, and we had 25 great years with him. What happened? What went wrong? Why? Was it foul play? Could he of been saved if she would if called 911 instead of going to work? Where do I go from here? I’m so beside myself, but what gives me solace is that I do feel and have experienced his spirit here and it seems to be so calm. But I still need answers if not for him, for me and my sanity. I loved him with all of my heart and soul, and just want to hold him one more time. It’s still so new, and the first anniversary of his death is coming up with, still, no response from the Police or Medical examiner. How do you cope and go on? Love and Miss you son…..A piece of my heart is in heaven.
Submitted by: Kathy Wiliams
My Tribute: My daughter Jess was a wonderful daughter, a caring nurse. She had an ankle injury requiring four operations and still had bones growing up her leg.
She got addicted to pain pills which spread to heroin, crystal meth and died from using Fentanyl.
I struggle every day with losing her. A parent should not have to bury their child.
Hoping others learn to stay away from street drugs.
Submitted by: Daan Valenti
My Tribute: My big sister and friend..God made us sisters…Love made us friends..I miss you..Gone to soon
Submitted by: Maureen Birmingham
My Tribute: Victoria was a beautiful soul. A smart, athletic, loving person. She was clean for 3 years and died from a relapse on 11/10/16 – she only had a small amount – which had about 70% fentanyl in it.
Her life was ahead of her…. she was going to to go into the navy and serve the country in Feb.
This is a disease… we need to help people find a path for treatment…. We need to help the siblings left behind… we need to help the parents left behind…. we need to heal……
Submitted by: Ashley
My Tribute: Richard was a great, sweet man. He had a funny sense of humor and could always make me laugh. He was adored by our daughter and had that natural daddy’s girl bond. He died of an overdose on 10/31/16. I wish he could of conquered his addiction and seen in himself what the rest of us saw in him.
Submitted by: Dina Aurichio
My Tribute: The world lost another beautiful soul on November 23, 2016 to an overdose. My son is no longer in pain, no longer feeling he is not good enough. He is finally at peace.
Submitted by: Lisa Bailey
My Tribute: You were truly an angel here on earth. Everyone who came into contact with you felt your love and caring, your positive outlook, your genuine heart. Those left behind will never be the same because of you. Your impact was immense. My wish is that you know this. Your goal was to make people happy and feel positive…you reached that goal, Chris. You truly did. You were, and continue to be, an inspiration. Rest in peace my love.
Submitted by: Kriste Bustamante
My Tribute: We miss you son. We prayed you would find your peace here on earth, but now we know you have found it in heaven. That is our only comfort. Your battle here is done. We love you forever.
Mom, Dad and Ryan
Submitted by: LaurI White, mom
My Tribute: Katie, you taught me how to love. The first time I held you, after the doctor pulled you from my womb, I learned the meaning of love. Thank you for that. I miss you so much, everyday! I love you with all my heart and I will be strong, for you alone. I know you didn’t want to die and I know you didn’t intend to leave me. My precious daughter. I’ll remember you until the day I get to be with you in heaven. Love you so much,
Submitted by: Marianne Boyle (Mom)
My Tribute: It is a struggle to get through each day without you Sean. It helps to try to tell my heart you are in a better place, and that you are no longer suffering. I never truly suffered a heartache until the day God called you home. I know you fought that long tough battle as hard as you could and unfortunately lost. You left behind family and MANY friends who love you VERY much. We have a lot of wonderful memories. I will never forget how you would light up a room when you made an entrance with that big beautiful smile, and had a laugh that was contagious. You LOVED to watch and play sports; I was your biggest fan when you played hockey, soccer, and baseball. I also loved hearing you sing to modern country songs, and OMG how you would dance like nobody was watching. I was, and still am, so VERY proud of you Sean! You are my angel and YOU will live on in my heart forever and ever!!!