Woman shares story of brother’s fentanyl death to raise awareness

A woman whose brother died of a fentanyl overdose is sharing the story in the hope it will help save others.
Published: May. 9, 2023 at 8:34 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - More than 70,000 Americans a year die from fentanyl overdoses. And on this National Fentanyl Awareness Day, a woman whose 18-year-old brother died of a fentanyl overdose is sharing her family’s heartbreak in the hope it will help save others.

“It’s hard to talk about. He was a really good kid,” said Lauren Littlefield.

The loss of her brother Chase is still raw for Littlefield, but through her grief she said she wants to share his story to try to save others. Littlefield said her brother’s co-worker gave him a pill that he had no idea was laced with the deadly drug.

”Fentanyl just doesn’t discriminate, whether it’s your 20th time, your 100th time, or it’s your first time trying something. It doesn’t matter. It can take your life in a matter of seconds,” she said.

One pill can kill. It only takes 2 milligrams of fentanyl to be deadly. That’s the amount that fits on the tip of a pencil.

”When we looked at all the research in the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency in 2022, of all the drugs they tested, the fake pills that they tested, 60% of those contain the deadly dose,” said Rosemary Blackmon, executive vice president for the Alabama Hospital Association.

A statewide coalition launched a campaign called Odds Are Alabama this year. It’s all about the dangers associated with taking drugs that are not prescribed for you. The effort also includes people like Littlefield who personally know the dangers of fentanyl.

Whitney Johnson with Project Freedom joins us today to tell us about her organization is launching a campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of fentanyl

“He was not an addict. He was just a kid. And he was left with the worst consequences from his childlike actions. He was left with adult consequences and it just is awful, said Littlefield. “It’s our job to tell our young people how dangerous it is.”

Blackmon said it’s not just pills. They’ve also been hearing about marijuana that’s been laced with illegal fentanyl.

Odds are Alabama offers resources to connect people with fentanyl test strips and free naloxone kits that can reverse overdoses.

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