by David Williams, HNN Freelance Correspondent

A family buried their loved one this week after he overdosed on drugs.  The family acknowledged the young man's demons and encouraged friends and families to donate to the recovery community instead of buying flowers. 

In the obituary in Monday's Herald-Dispatch, the family said "was an old soul from birth, who never failed to share his beautiful smile and unconditional love with all those he came in contact with. ---- fought a long, hard battle for many years with the demons in his own head and the demon of addiction outside. Yet even through all the struggles, he maintained his unending love for his fellow man and worked at helping others to battle their addictions. ---- loved what he did for a living, being in construction since his early teens, he loved being at Wisteria and spending his nights at Paw Paw with the drums, he loved baseball, he was the most loyal of friends, many times the life of the party, and more often the shoulder to lean on when needed. He loved his baby sister with a devotion beyond all else. And in these last nine months, he found love and happiness as he had never known. I am beyond grateful to all those who have shared their stories of him with me this week".



This beautiful and loving tribute from a family in obvious dire pain and their willingness to acknowledge their loved one's demons in the hope others can learn from this senseless could make the coldest heart and hardest of souls cry.  This puts a face on an addict and shows that every life is valuable.  No matter how lost the soul may have gotten they loved and were loved.  Even though they died in a very senseless way they left an impact on the world.



These statistics, these numbers, these addicts that are dying are our sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, friends, spouses, ect.  Please try to help spare any more families senseless pain.  If you are an addict please realize how much you mean to your family.  If you are a loved one please even though the odds are against you to get help for our loved ones.  This epidemic has touched every family in this community and must be stopped.