Aaron Selchow of Los Gatos, California, lost his best friend to a car accident during his senior year. Over the next three years, Selchow self-medicated his grief with drugs and alcohol until July, 2010, when he overdosed on methadone and died at the age of 20, according to Mercury News.

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His friends were devastated, just as he had been when he lost his buddy years earlier. But rather than succumb to drugs and alcohol to treat their depression, they have chosen a different route.

Fighting Drug Addiction and Drug Overdose With Organization and Hope

Melissa Barnes, 19, is a friend of Selchow’s. She says: “We lost Aaron because of drugs. Now we want to go out there and tell his story.”

Barnes is president of Rally for Addiction. She and five other friends of Selchow started the organization with the hope that the organization, because it is run by young people, will speak to young people in a way that other organizations aimed at teen drug use but run by adults cannot.

Jessica Snee, 17, is vice president of Rally. She says: “We have to figure out how to get into people’s heads. They need to realize what they’re doing and want to stop for themselves, not for us.”

On October 28, the group will hold a candlelight vigil at Oak Meadow Park in Los Gatos to promote awareness and to give others in the community an opportunity to remember loved ones lost to drug addiction.

Barnes says: “We want people to understand that drug addiction has to be out in the open; you don’t need to be ashamed. This is something that is killing our youth, and we need to unite to fight it.”

Support the Fight Against Teen Drug Addiction and Overdose

If you would like to support Rally, you can. Vigils, like everything in life, costs money, and Rally members are working hard to raise the $5000 they need to hold the vigil by the date of the event. For example, because Selchow was a skateboarder, Rally members approached Jimbo Phillips, a Santa Cruz skateboard artist, and he offered to design a board in memory of Selchow well below cost so that they can raise money for the event.

Their website, RallyForAddiction.com, makes these boards available to anyone who would like to support their cause. The design features a skull with dog tags rising from a grave with Selchow’s name, and the words “Remember Our Fallen Brother” and “You only get one chance at life.”

Get Help For Those You Love: Drug Addiction Intervention

If someone you love is addicted to drugs and alcohol, don’t let another day pass without trying to help. One way to communicate to your loved one that their drug and alcohol abuse is deadly and reaching a crisis point is a drug rehab intervention. It is at an intervention that you can help your loved one understand that drug and alcohol rehab is the only way to effect positive change in their lives.

If you would like assistance finding a professional interventionist or a place for your loved one in drug rehab, contact us at Michael’s House today.