HUNTSVILLE, Alabama – Huntsville nonprofit Not One More Alabama held its fourth annual “End Addiction HSV” walk on Saturday.
For mothers Micheala Phillips and Darby Taylor, attending the walk is like remembering their sons. Phillips’ son, Tyler, and Taylor’s son, Zack, both died of fentanyl overdoses.
“They were good kids,” Phillips said.
Taylor encouraged parents who suspect their children are using drugs to have a conversation with them.
“Do something, if you have that little hint or a hunch, because it can happen to anyone,” she said.
Event organizer Shannan Roberts says the goal is to reduce the stigma surrounding addiction, so people aren’t ashamed to ask for help.
“When someone is addicted to a substance, they feel so isolated and alone,” Roberts said. “They don’t want to reach out, even to family members, because they don’t want anyone to see that they are suffering. They have the impression of having faults, which they absolutely are not, they are suffering from an illness.
Local substance abuse resource organizations were on hand to provide information to families and those in need of treatment. Free NARCAN training and distribution were also available.
But for Phillips and Taylor, one of the best parts of the event is the sense of community they get from hanging out with families who have had similar experiences.
“You meet people. You get together. And those who have been through this for a little while, we are there to support and love those who are a little cooler. And tell them you’ll get there. You’ll get by, ”Phillips said.
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