“I’m grateful to be here and I’m grateful the Governor and
First Lady started something like this. I try to make sure that, in the
recovery part of my life, I reach out in some way to help – whether it’s
somebody still suffering addiction or alcoholism, or whether it’s something
with the community, so I’m really grateful to be a part of this.”
Adam also says he expects“Start Talking” to make an impact because he believes there’s
plenty of work to do.
“The fact is that Ohio has a real problem – and it’s
nationwide – but it’s right here at home and we have to do something different.
We can’t continue to have the same mentality and do the same things and expect
something different to happen. We need to have resources available from a
prevention approach, like we’re doing here, and the treatment approach.”
The director of the Ohio Department of Aging Bonnie Berman,
told the assembly she wants the “Start Talking” program to help people
understand the need for accountability, and how to be good teammates to one
“The ultimate team sport is called ‘life.’ Sometimes when we
make decisions we forget that they impact our family – parents, grandparents,
brothers and sisters, our schools.”
Others speaking at the presentation were Marietta High
School head football coach Jason Schob, Washington County Chief Deputy Sheriff
Mark Warden, and Marietta City Schools Superintendent Harry Fleming.
Dr. Fleming told those in the auditorium he has seen drug abuse
negatively affect too many students in his years as an educator, including a
particular instance that still sticks out in his mind.
“I had a student in
the fourth grade who died of a heroin overdose. It just breaks your heart when
you see happen.”
All of the speakers highlighted the real existence of child
drug abuse in Ohio, and each speaker encouraged the audience to get word out
about the “Start Talking” program on social media, and to reach out to people
they think may be struggling with drug abuse.
And, as Adam said, it may be time to for families to be more
open with each other, talking about everything in each other’s lives at the
dinner table again.
Story reported by Justin Bradley; edited by Mike Cullums