WILMINGTON — Drug overdoses have claimed the lives of a few people recently in Clinton County which is disheartening, but the number would likely be bigger by one if not for the quick action and empathy of a drug court graduate who assisted first responders during an overdose Oct. 1.
The story was told at the closing of the Friday, Nov. 5 session of the You-Turn Recovery Docket (local drug court) by Intensive Supervision Officer Brenda Harris.
It was one of her clients who overdosed, and upon reading the police report she saw that somebody she knows saved the person’s life. She told the drug court participants and other attendees she wanted to share the incident report with them.
Another person who helped out in the situation is an unknown male who walked to the downtown Wilmington Fire Station and advised there was a guy on the ground near the railroad tracks near Hawley Avenue, according to the incident report.
The person was located in that area, and “he was unresponsive and blue. He was only taking about one breath a minute,” the report continues.
A paramedic and a police officer picked him up and carried him to an open area where they could start working on him. He was completely unresponsive, states the report, and his face and arms were blue.
Both of the fire department’s life squad vehicles were out on other calls and their response times to the overdose site were delayed.
Before a squad could arrive, Jason Hollingsworth from Sugartree Ministries arrived with Narcan. He said someone came to the street ministry and told them someone had overdosed down by the railroad tracks.
The Narcan was administered and it took several doses, but the person was eventually revived.
Having finished reading the report, Harris spoke about Hollingsworth.
Those who know Jason, she said, know he is a very humble person. She speaks with him maybe once a week as he is a good liaison in the community, including when the Clinton County Community Supervision Department needs to find someone to get them into treatment but they can’t find them.
“He doesn’t like to be in the public eye, but he definitely needs recognized for this. So he gets the Good Samaritan Award,” announced Harris.
Hollingsworth graduated from the You-Turn Recovery Docket programming in April 2020.
Judge John W. “Tim” Rudduck, who presides over the local drug court, said Hollingsworth has taken recovery to a level the judge doesn’t think anybody imagined when You-Turn staffers and the judge first started with him.
Hollingsworth has affected many lives, the judge said, and moreover helped start the landscaping company that Sugartree Ministries launched a while back.
“Really, I’m so proud of you,” Rudduck told him in front of a courtroom gallery full of people.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.