A Spike in our Veins
Submission Date: December 2014
Attributing Author: Gordy Megroz
Source: Mountain Magazine
Injury, prescription painkillers, opiate addiction, death. Gordy Megroz reports on the growing heroin epidemic in mountain towns.
“Get Your Feet Off The Table!” Did you do your chores?? Brennen Dekeersgieter shouts at a friend, playfully imitating an authority figure they know. At six feet, three inches tall and athletic, Brennen’s imposing enough to command respect when barking orders. But his kind blue eyes and goofy demeanor invite the dinner table to erupt in laughter.
With a grin, Brennen wraps his arm around his younger sister Caitlin and hugs her. It’s Thanksgiving 2012 and the Dedeersgieter family have come to Portland, Maine to celebrate the holiday with Brennen, know to friends as Bo. There’s cause for joy. The 26-year-old has been clean for 10 weeks, a notable stretch after a five-year prescription opiate habit compounded by more than a year of heroin addiction.