My name is Jodi Barber.
I lost my 19 year old son and 3 of his close friends in 2010 to an overdose. My husband and I found our son on the couch at 3 A.M. barely breathing. He was in a drug induced coma. I watched as his father did CPR and I called 911. The ambulance came, the paramedics worked on him, and then rushed him to the hospital where he was born. Jarrod passed away at 3:47am. We drove back home to wake up his then 15 year old brother to tell him the news. We went back to the hospital to say our goodbyes.
A week and a half later, his good friend in the army was found in his bathroom with a needle. Six months later, another friend was found in his car after picking up his fix and 11 months later another close friend died from snorting opana. One pill can kill if clean and used again!
I took my son for help with his addiction to opana and marijuana. The doctor prescribed 2 clonazepam, Cymbalta and 4 Seroquel. The Seroquel was prescribed the day before Jarrod passed away. He took them for the first time the night he passed. Jarrod also relapsed that night on a quarter of opana. His two friends thought he was sleeping and left at 12:30. They had no idea.
I heard of more deaths that year so I quickly got the dirty doctor who was overprescribing deadly combinations on the news and in the newspaper. Now more and more parents were contacting me about that doctor. I started collecting empty pill bottles and scripts from parents and worked with the DEA. She was already under investigation for two years!! More parents came forward with lawsuits whose sons died under her care. Jarrod was misusing opioids that Dr.Lisa Tseng over prescribed.
I put up posters with my home number of 21 faces of kids who died. I started getting calls and discovered we had an epidemic here: 80 deaths that year and almost 400 deaths in 2016! I along with a woman named Christine Wood produced a documentary in 2012 called Overtaken. Two years later, I produced Overtaken 2. The documentaries are used in schools across the nation as part of the health curriculum and also used in DUI classes, courtrooms and rehabs. They can be viewed on You Tube. I volunteer in schools doing presentations and I’m an advocate helping pass laws, etc. Narcan saves lives and I distribute the nasal spray.
I do this because all these deaths are preventable and I don’t want another family to go through this!
Story by Jodi Barber