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people Trouble comes in twos—at least that’s what many of us have heard over the years. But most of us could never imagine this double trouble taking the form of 2 of our children finding themselves in the grips of drug addiction, after 2 very separate and major accidents years apart. That’s exactly what happened to Pat and Cindy of Las Vegas, Nevada.

The First Blow

The trouble started with their son, who, at the young age of 15 had a near fatal accident, leaving him in a coma with permanent brain damage and no short-term memory upon wakening. Cindy recalls, “Our son was an honors student and a gifted athlete, this part of his life was taken from him. We took him to several brain institutes with all the same answers: ‘You can’t repair the brain, teach him to do a menial job.’ These answers just made it worse.”

The already bad situation was made almost unbearable when the necessary evil of prescription pain pills took their habit-forming toll. The medications combined with their son’s depression caused his condition to spiral out of control. “It began a 9-year addiction to heroin, pills, cocaine—anything he could get his hands on,” said Cindy.

“We tried 12-step programs, they didn’t work for him. We finally did the tough love program and threw him out on the streets with nothing.” Giving him an ultimatum that he either get help, or they would no longer communicate with him was one of the toughest decisions they ever made, but it proved to be the impetus their son needed to come to grips with his situation.

During this desperate time, Cindy started scouring the internet for the best rehabilitation programs. Narconon’s unique treatment approach toward drug and alcohol addiction stood out like a beacon in a sea of options. It wasn’t long before she contacted Dan Carmichael at Narconon’s treatment center.  He was “wonderful, patient and so helpful,” at a time when they needed it most.

What attracted Cindy to the program is Narconon’s unique approach of completely eradicating the residual effects of the drugs and toxins during the withdrawal phase of the program. The drugs are cleansed from a person’s body through a nutrition and sauna program delivered under very specific guidelines. Considering that 40 to 60 percent of drug abusers relapse after rehab, it’s easy to see why it’s so important that a person eliminates any residual effects of the drugs in their system.

Cindy says it was a long road, but when her son finally started on Narconon’s program, it was more difficult for him than most. Because of his brain damage, he couldn’t learn. But the staff at Narconon Colorado – A Life Worth Saving refused to give up and they taught Cindy’s son to use the undamaged part of his brain. Because of the support from his parents and the Narconon staff, he was not only a successful graduate of the treatment program, but is currently finishing up his Master’s Degree with Honors, is newly married and has an amazing job.

Devastation Times Two

When years later their daughter’s life took a turn down a similar path to her brother’s, her parents were devastated.

As Cindy describes it, “We have always been very involved parents. Our daughter had a wonderful life and we were very close. She was quite worldly and had been to over 45 countries by the age of 18. Her dream was to work with children in Africa…”

Unfortunately, drug abuse snatched that dream from their daughter’s grasp before she had a chance to realize it.

“A car accident, a bad choice of friends and depression can take that [ideal] away from a family overnight,” said Cindy.

When this happened to their daughter, they sent her to Narconon Fresh Start in Fort Collins, Colorado. She got through the program successfully and felt so strongly about the program she decided to stay and become an intern. Today she is a staff member at Narconon Colorado and is helping others through their own drug addiction.

Thanks to Narconon drug rehabilitation program, this family was fortunate enough to experience two happy endings. As Cindy tells it, “Narconon Colorado – A Life Worth Saving not only saved our daughter’s life, our son’s life, but ours as well.”

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