Tampa mom who lost son to deadly overdose urges parents to have Narcan at home

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – When Winter Haven police officers found a Polk County mom in a church parking lot, she was in bad shape. The 31-year-old parent was in the front seat overdosing and her young children were in the backseat.

Police told News Channel 8 the woman was shooting up and was near death, nodding off while her babies watched.

Police knew they had to act fast.

They had with them the modern day version of a miracle worker, a drug called naloxone, known as Narcan. The medicine reverses an overdose and has become one of the most important weapons in the arsenal of battling drug addiction, namely opioid addiction.

Turns out, right now in the Tampa Bay area,  Narcan is needed more than ever, especially with the newest, lethal drug cocktail becoming a popular high.

The combo is ferocious and it’s causing people to overdose, according to Hillsborough leaders. The drug is not just one destructive substance, not two, but three. It combines oxycodone, cocaine and heroin. It’s called a “Speedball.”

More and more, paramedics and police officers are seeing the effects of this popular drug cocktail of choice for addicts.

Cindy Grant knows what happens when deadly drugs are used and abused. This mom’s ultimate pain, the loss of a child, is living proof that addiction is heartbreaking. She says the need for Narcan is more than evident.

For this Tampa mom, a deadly drug overdose took everything from her. She lost her son, Dan, amidst a deadly dose that included an opioid. She urges parents who have a child suffering from addiction to consider having Narcan at home.

“For my son, it was his first time using and it was his last time. I am worried about kids these days. They are playing with their lives,” Grant said. After losing her son, she has dedicated every day to saving lives as the Director of the Hillsborough County Anti-Drug Alliance.

“If we can save one life, it’s worth it,” Grant explained. “It was too late for my son. That’s why we work so hard each and every day.” Grant knows that with this latest combination of deadly drugs, it’s more important than ever to continue educating families and counseling parents.



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