A memorial for local victims of the current Louisiana drug epidemic is set to happen at Girard Park in Lafayette on Friday, July 29th. Organizers of the event hope to bring light to the memory of their loved ones and give attention to the drug epidemic happening right here in Acadiana.

Millie Mattered

It is no secret how serious of a problem the United States currently has with deaths caused by drug overdose, specifically those involving fentanyl. Whether you are someone or know someone who has been touched by addiction, it isn't hard to understand just how detrimental these issues can be for families.

Resources from @CornerstoneSoCa show us the staggering statistics surrounding synthetic opioid overdoses in the United States across recent years.

What is fentanyl?

Regarding fentanyl specifically, the United States Drug Enforcement Agency says the following:

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 80-100 times stronger than morphine. Pharmaceutical fentanyl was developed for pain management treatment of cancer patients, applied in a patch on the skin. Because of its powerful opioid properties, Fentanyl is also diverted for abuse. Fentanyl is added to heroin to increase its potency, or be disguised as highly potent heroin. Many users believe that they are purchasing heroin and actually don’t know that they are purchasing fentanyl – which often results in overdose deaths. Clandestinely-produced fentanyl is primarily manufactured in Mexico.

Locally, law enforcement has been cracking down on the possession of fentanyl. In April, a man from Abbeville was sentenced to 57 months in prison after pleading guilty to distributing fentanyl. Again in April of this year, details from the Orleans Parish Coroner's Office regarding the death of a UNO student came out that revealed she had died of fentanyl poisoning and ethanol intoxication.

There are more cases that could be cited, but the scary truth of it all is that fentanyl is extremely dangerous and works very quickly.

As overdose-related deaths continue to touch families across the state of Louisiana, some are organizing to not only shed light on the lives that were lost but also to spread awareness of the current Louisiana drug epidemic.

A special memorial for young people here in Acadiana that lost their lives as a result of a drug overdose is taking place on July 29th, 2022 and it's happening at Girard Park in Lafayette. The event will have a food truck, music, informational speakers, and fellowship for those who have lost loved ones.

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Free Narcan will be provided at the event as well.

The event begins at 7:30 p.m. and runs until 9:30 p.m. with everyone being invited to attend. VICE Network is expected to attend and cover the event.

The organizers do not plan to stop here either. Some of them will soon be headed to Washington D.C. to rally together and drive even more awareness towards the growing drug epidemic happening across the United States.

You can find the local event page with full details on Facebook by clicking HERE.

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