Anthony James Shimko
Anthony, who we called TJ, was a great person who enjoyed hunting and hanging out with his friends. He liked Eminem and he loved to laugh and joke. TJ was a happy-go-lucky guy -- most of the time. Other times, he was suicidal (he thought) and extremely depressed. TJ started using weed, probably around the age of 19. He then began using "a line" of coke "here and there." After this, he then moved to heroin. At first he snorted it. Then he began to shoot it. The heroin went to snorting and injecting coke, then to crack, then to Xanax, then to other types of pills, such as Vicoden, Loratabs, Percocet -- anything he could get his hands on.
He was never happy with a little bit -- he always had to take it to an extreme. He used to steal a lot from stores (not people) to support his habit, which was usually everyday. We had a long talk about three weeks before he died. I told him, "TJ, you're never around unless your not getting high and I can't sit back and watch you kill yourself anymore." After that, we spent a couple days together. We went to the fireworks together, watched some movies and went to Linn Run State Park. On August 5, 2004 at 2:43 am, my cousin Brandi, TJ's girlfriend, called me. She said, "TJ overdosed, he's dead."
At that time, my life had changed forever. After his autopsy, we found that he had cocaine, heroin and Xanax in his system. He died from mixing uppers (coke), and downers (Xanax, heroin) together.
Since he listened to Eminem a lot, when my daughter and I hear that music, we cry. Anytime something exciting happens in my life, I think of TJ, bcause if he were alive, I would be calling him. He is the only man that's ever been there for my daughters -- he was like a father to them. He spent alot of time with my daughter Kimi. She loved him unconditionally. We all did.
He is in heaven and is resting in peace. All the pain and sickness is over. I hope someone else can benefit from this story. He didn't realize how much he was loved and cared about. TJ is so sadly missed by his family, his friends and especially his little girl, Bailey Paige.
We love you TJ.
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