‘Mass-Casualty Event’: Ohio County Now Tops U.S. in Overdose Deaths
DAYTON, Ohio — Officials in Montgomery County, Ohio, blame America’s opioid crisis for an ignoble title: “The overdose capital of America”
A record 4,050 people died of drug overdoses in 2016, with fatalities driven in large part by the emergence of stronger drugs like the synthetic painkiller fentanyl, the Health Department said. Overdose deaths rose 33 percent over the 3,050 deaths in 2015 !
Ohio has been one of the states hit hardest by the crisis. Last year, 86% of overdose deaths in the state involved an opioid.
Some people think that most addicts start just shooting up straight heroin but prescription painkiller abuse is frequently a gateway to heroin and fentanyl use later on !
DAMMMNNN I was floored by the statistics there !!!
I have been doing extensive research on Ohio and the epidemic there.
My goal was to do as much research as possible, and then to head there to the Ohio school system to share my story.
My goal is to hit up every city in Ohio !!!
If you live in any city in Ohio and you are being affected by the epidemic there, please share your personal stories with me.
Maybe you can meet me in person when I visit your city !
This opioid heroin epidemic spares no one not even a Sheriff’s wife.
As you will read later in my post about a Sheriff’s wife from Ohio suffering from addiction.
You cannot always look at someone and tell if they are addicted.
And anyone can become an addict.
ADDICTION DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE !!!
*** THE OHIO SHERIFF’S STORY***
(CNN) Sheriff Robert Leahy was sitting on his couch, watching TV, when his wife, Gretchen, walked through the front door.
It was about 10 p.m. She’d left for the grocery store hours earlier. Now, she “bumbled” about the room, Leahy says, incoherent and vacant. He’d seen her like this before.
“What the f**k are you doing?” he asked. “You’re high.”
After the initial shock wore off, Leahy was angry and embarrassed. He worried about his reputation and what his colleagues at the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office would think. He’d been a law enforcement officer for more than a decade, and now he was married to a heroin addict.
He needed to save himself and their young son. He had done all he could to save her.
Just weeks earlier, Gretchen had returned home to Madeira, Ohio, from Crossroads Centre Antigua, an addiction treatment facility founded by musician Eric Clapton. It was one of a handful of times she’d received treatment for opiate addiction in the past five years. Leahy says he spent more than $16,000 — nearly all of their life savings — to cover the cost.
And now she was high again.
On September 7, 2005, Leahy filed for divorce and a temporary restraining order.
At first, Leahy could not understand why his wife had let herself become an addict, why she had made that choice. But as he watched her struggle for years to stay clean, his knowledge of addiction matured. He began to see it as a disease in need of treatment and compassion.
Leahy recognized the trend and had an idea. He’d heard about law enforcement agencies in other parts of the country equipping their officers with a drug called naloxone, also known by the brand name Narcan. Administered as a nasal spray, the drug could reverse the effects of an opioid overdose and was easy to use. Leahy lobbied Sheriff A.J. “Tim” Rodenberg and volunteered to lead the initiative.
By 2014, Leahy had climbed the ranks to chief deputy in the Clermont County Sheriff’s Office.
Leahy and Gretchen still shared custody of their son, but he says she was rarely around. She would stay clean for a few weeks — periods he calls “flashes of brilliance.” Each time, he hoped she’d turned a corner. But really, he was just waiting for her to relapse. If she overdosed, he would want the responding officer to have all the tools available to revive her, so she’d have the chance to fight another day.
Leahy says he speaks with Gretchen only occasionally now. There’s no ill will, but since their son has grown, there’s also no need. Gretchen says she’s been sober for three years, and Leahy gives her the benefit of the doubt. Not that he would ever ask.
“There is no rhyme or reason,”
“This is one of those deals, it’s kind of like fighting cancer. Your first heaviest, hardest hit is going to give you the best opportunity.”
NEVER GIVE UP HOPE !!!!
FIGHT FOR YOUR LIFE !!!!
Thanks for chiming in…