Photo submitted by
Steven and Susan Salomone
Tell us about your loved one.
Justin was very bright and creative. When he picked up the guitar, he made it sing. As a young boy, he was an avid reader and loved to have books read to him. He excelled at sales and people found him very likeable. Justin also loved to cook and watched many of the cooking shows on TV. He had a very strong network of clean and sober friends from the AA group that he belonged to.
Tell us about Justin's struggle with addiction
Justin had anxiety and he self-medicated with drugs from when he was 16 years old. At 23, he started with the painkillers and at 25 he was addicted to heroin. We tried several different approaches to recovery and Justin would get 4-6 months and then go out and use again. Finally, he was clean for 7 months and went out and overdosed because, as so many others, his body was no longer used to the high doses he was accustomed to taking.
What made Justin smile?
Justin loved to play the guitar and he loved girls. He loved the challenge of succeeding at an endeavor.
What do you miss most about Justin?
Whenever Justin came home he would have a big "Hi Mom" for me. I can still hear it. We miss his smile and his excellent guitar playing. We miss his spirit.