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‘It could have been me’: He lost friends, and now he’s one of many working to get clean

Josh Lieffring is a 19-year-old from Mason who vividly remembers being “younger and wanting to get high on Xanax and other stuff.”

He has been clean for more than four months now, and after not enjoying success previously, Lieffring is more determined now than ever to win the battle.

He was one of multiple former addicts whose stories the Journal-News has shared recently to show that many see some hope in overcoming the opioid epidemic that has ravaged many communities.

“It’s like a hint from life I guess,” Lieffring said, while sitting in the office of Pinpoint Behavioral Solutions in Middletown, one of the latest treatment programs to enter the drug battle.

“I have been clean for around four months from Xanax. In the past two weeks, two people I know have passed away from overdosing on Xanax or using Xanax that was laced with fentanyl.”

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He added, “It kind of makes you look at it that it could have been me if I stopped being clean.”

READ MORE RECOVERY STORIES

• He went to prison. She struggled with addiction. Now remarried, they tell a story of overcoming opioids.

• So many opioid epidemic stories are devastating. These are stories of hope.

• What this local church is building to help innocent victims of the opioid epidemic

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