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April 16, 2019

As addiction crisis hits Hagerstown, Rep. David Trone takes action

Credit: Local DVM, Valerie Bell

HAGERSTOWN, Md. – Congressman David Trone is touring Maryland’s 6th district with a focus on addressing the opioid epidemic. 

The opioid epidemic is Representative Trone’s top priority in Congress. This is something he has been personally affected by.

As part of his efforts to combat this crisis in the country, he is here in Hagerstown as part of a three day tour focused on ending the addiction epidemic, which is something many are familiar with here in Hagerstown. 

Rik Parks lost his stepson, Tommy Norton IV, on November 23 to a fentanyl overdose. 

Parks said, “Tommy did have a drug problem many years ago and he went through some bad times.”

“We thought he was clean, we had no idea he was using again,” Parks added.

Because of their family’s loss, they have a grief counseling session here in Hagerstown for those who have lost someone to an overdose and information on their sessions can be found on their facebook page “Justice for Tommy.”

Director of Behavioral Health, Washington County Health Department, Vicki Sterling said that since January 1 there have been 22 overdoses in our area.

Tuesday morning Trone, Vicki Sterling and a few other elected officials attended a Narcan training session at Hagerstown City Hall.

Trone said stopping this epidemic is his main focus in Congress and that bringing Narcan training to Washington County is just one of several efforts to fight the opioid addiction in the area.

The congressman has dealt with this problem facing our country and our county first hand, and uses his personal experience in combating the epidemic. 

Trone says, “my nephew Ian Trone died two years ago at age 24 of a fentanyl overdose. If Narcan had been there, he could be alive today. Nobody that is a user wants to die, so we have to take out the stigma and widely distribute Narcan.”

Trone also said that both democrats and republicans are making progress in fighting this epidemic by putting together 15 to 20 different bills to cover all facets of addiction.