Some 23.5 million people in the U.S. have sought treatment for illicit drug or alcohol abuse. And yet, despite the ubiquity of addiction, it's often not talked about because of fear or shame.
One man hoping to change that paradigm is Tom Parks. The New Hampshire father recently penned a harrowing obituary about his 24-year-old daughter, Molly, and the heroin addiction that claimed her life. Though the obituary does its part to memorialize Molly—red lipstick was her trademark, she was obsessed with fashion, and she came from a loving family—it also doesn't shy away from discussing her struggles with addiction. The heroin epidemic, Parks writes, "has been so destructive to individuals and families in her age bracket."
Why share the darker side of Molly's life? Parks told The Washington Post:
"Even if one person reads that and says, ‘Oh my God, that can be me,’ and stops—if we could save one life—we could be happy . . . That would mean that Molly didn’t die in vain.”
Read and share the obituary below.
Molly Alice Parks, age 24, who most currently resided in Manchester, NH, passed away in Manchester on April 16, 2015 as the result of a heroin overdose.
She was born in York, Maine on March 13, 1991, a daughter of Tom and Patti (Michaud) Parks.
Molly graduated from Old Orchard Beach High School in 2009 and attended one year at SMCC until her addiction took over. Most recently, she was employed as a delivery driver for Portland Pie Co. in Manchester, NH. She enjoyed theater, fashion, reading—especially Harry Potter, and will always be remembered for fearless personality and her trademark red lipstick. Along Molly's journey through life, she made a lot of bad decisions including experimenting with drugs. She fought her addiction to heroin for at least five years and had experienced a near fatal overdose before. Molly's family truly loved her and tried to be as supportive as possible as she struggled with the heroin epidemic that has been so destructive to individuals and families in her age bracket.
She is survived by her parents- Tom Parks and his wife Pat Noble of Saco and Patti Michaud Parks of Berlin, NH; sister- Kasey Parks of OOB; step siblings — Dustin and Delayna Denicourt of Biddeford; maternal grandparents - Rita and Raymond Michaud of Berlin, NH; paternal grandmother - Ruth Parks of OOB; and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews, and a niece.
If you have any loved ones who are fighting addiction, Molly's family asks that you do everything possible to be supportive, and guide them to rehabilitation before it is too late.