Parenthood
Mom shares heartbreaking photo of her son in hospital to make other parents aware
She hopes raising awareness will save others from going through this type of pain.
Elijah Chan
11.21.22

Drug abuse has shattered millions of lives across the globe.

In 2017, a viral photo spread on the internet putting this global concern at the center of the conversation it wished to spark.

YouTube Screenshot - CBC News
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - CBC News

The heartbreaking photo opened a window of awareness of the realities of drug use and the danger it entailed.

Sherri Kent was lying right beside her child when the photo was taken.

Michael Kent, meanwhile, lay unconscious.

He has wires and tubes going around, through, and on his body.

He was just 22 years old at that time.

YouTube Screenshot - CBC News
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - CBC News

Sherri was hugging her son at that moment.

Maybe pleading for him to open his eyes so they could finally move on from the nightmare.

She even said that hospital staff made her a spot on her son’s bed just so she could lie down and talk to him.

Michael fell into a coma after overdosing on a powerful drug.

Just a day before the overdose, Michael and his sister met a man while they were running errands.

Michael was just new to the place as he had just recently moved in with his sister.

Right on their first meeting, the stranger was already offering him drugs.

At that moment, his sister forced him to decline.

YouTube Screenshot - CBC News
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - CBC News

Unfortunately, it was not the end of that encounter.

While his sister was asleep, Michael met with the man once more.

The man offered him a “really strong” type of heroin.

The pair then went to a store’s washroom and took the drugs.

Sherri said that the man got all “sketched out and messed up” and left Michael alone in the washroom.

YouTube Screenshot - CBC News
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - CBC News

About 20 minutes later, the man asked the people who ran the store to unlock the washroom door because he was too scared to see what happened to Michael.

“That’s when they found him. He was already blue in the lips. By the time the ambulance got there he was in cardiac arrest,” Sherri recalled to CBC.

Michael was rushed to the hospital.

He was placed on life support but the damage had already been done.

One week after he overdosed, the family let him go.

Wikicommons - DanielTahar
Source:
Wikicommons - DanielTahar

Michael was believed to have overdosed on fentanyl.

Fentanyl is a man-made opioid that’s about 100 times more potent than morphine.

It is usually packaged as “high-grade heroin” but the drug can be severely harmful.

Wikicommons - US DEA
Source:
Wikicommons - US DEA

It is also believed that even at 2 milligrams, fentanyl can be fatal to most people.

The United Nations dubbed the drug as one of the most dangerous drugs in the world at one point.

Over 100,000 deaths are attributed to drug overdose in the United States alone.

At that time Sherri shared the photo and intended to raise awareness about the dangers of opioid use.

She advocated for the accessibility of naloxone kits.

This drug can be injected into a victim to temporarily reverse opioid overdose.

YouTube Screenshot - CBC News
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - CBC News

This can then provide enough time to call for medical help and reserve the dangerous process altogether.

“I recommend anybody who has friends or anybody that does do drugs to get one of these,” she said to CBC. “They give you the time you need to get medical help.”

YouTube Screenshot - CBC News
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - CBC News

And while she cannot bring Michael back, she hopes the awareness she raised will curb these incidents and save the lives of vulnerable people.

Learn more about this tragic story in the video below.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

By Elijah Chan
hi@sbly.com
Elijah Chan is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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