Remember the loss of “Broadway” Jimmy Hayes, back in August. 2 months ago?
He’d collapsed at his house, early in the morning, after a night with friends & family, celebrating his son’s 2nd birthday. His wife horrifically found him laying on the floor of their bathroom.
At the time, Darren, Theo and I thought hard about the right way to approach this story. Preliminary results had come back from the coroner, & were inconclusive, “pending toxicology.”
Sadly, when other things like heart, lungs, brain hemorrhages, kidneys, & other vital organs have been crossed off the list for potential culprits & the coroner’s down to toxicology reports, drugs are most often the reason.
This was the case recently with Tyler Skaggs, starting pitcher for the Angels. It’s been the case countless times for celebs…& of course everyday folks. The difference is, with public figures, the story is just that – public.
And our culture’s been – not to talk about possibilities or reasons, for the purposes of privacy. But the larger societal problem then becomes, when the final reasons are revealed, the story is out of the news cycle, & the masses don’t learn about these drugs as the huge culprits they can be.
This is why Robin Lehner took the stand he did a number of weeks ago. He’s tired of seeing the culture in sports (& beyond) being about opioids or ambiens, or recreational drug use, because they can turn deadly – especially when the recreational ones are laced with fentanyl.
What a gift that the Hayes’ are talking openly to prevent future tragedies. This from Jimmy’s dad:
“I was in shock when it happened, but then I started putting stuff together in my head.” (Jimmy) made a terrible mistake and it cost him his life.”
“About maybe 16 or 17 months ago, I saw a little change in Jimmy’s behavior & I went to him and I said, ‘I think there might be a problem here with pills.’ He had had an injury for a while & I think he started taking the painkillers & they get you,” he continued, sharing that Jimmy told him: “Dad, I’m hooked on these pills. I got injured & I started taking them & I never got off.”
Let’s work in Jimmy’s name, to educate & prevent.