by Jill Cichowicz
The opioid crisis in this country is alarming. Every single day I read about another person dying from an overdose.
I used to believe drug overdoses happened to “those people” and definitely not anyone in my family. We grew up in a strict Catholic household, attending mass weekly and had dinner together every night as a family. My parents were tough, but loving and I remember my childhood as a happy one filled with long days playing outside with my twin brother, Scott.
And then life changed
Those happy days turned dark quickly when I lost my twin brother to an accidental overdose on February 28, 2017, a date will forever been burned in my brain. I hate the month of February now. I shouldn’t blame the month, but I do.
Scott had a big heart and loved to help those less fortunate, but he never helped himself. I think he did great acts of kindness to help the void he was feeling inside.
Long story short, Scott lost his girlfriend in high school due to a tragic car accident and never recovered. He started using marijuana to cope with the pain and years later he suffered a back injury on a job and was put on Oxycontin through workers’ compensation and doctors. He was NEVER able to get off pain pills and fought like hell. He thought he could do it himself.
Once the pharmacist realized he was being overprescribed by doctors, they yanked his prescription. He then turned to a “friend” for what he thought was an Oxycontin and took a pill laced with Fentanyl.
Scott died at Starbucks getting a cup of coffee within minutes in the parking lot. He didn’t stand a chance, my world was forever changed that day. Sadly, I have a hard time remembering memories before that day.
It’s like the old Jill died and a new one took my place
Since Scott’s passing, I have thrown myself into educating and helping others suffering from SUD receive help through The Scott Zebrowki Scholarship Fund at the McShin Foundation. We have a planning committee that works tirelessly throughout the year to help raise funds, visit anightforscott.com for more information.
In addition, I was asked to serve on an Ad Hoc Purdue Victims Committee to help those other victims countrywide that have been affected by Purdue Pharma. So many have lost their lives as a result of Purdue Pharma and the Sackler Family.
Opioid Injury Claims
If you or a family member have been affected, please visit opioidinjuryclaims.com. It’s so very important that victims come together to file a claim, power in numbers. Together we can End the Stigma, Fight for Tomorrow.