November 10th I recieved a phone call I didn't want to hear. My uncle had called and told me that my younger brother Jamie had gotten killed. Jamie was seven years younger than me and I enjoyed being his big brother. He was always imaginative, energetic and funny. He was a natural born storyteller and we never knew what he was going to come up with next. His outgoing personality always won him friends. One of the happiest days of his life was when he got married. He also became the proud father to his son and soon after a daughter, both of whom he was very proud of. One day he told me about a drug that was gaining alot of popularity. It was even more addictive than crack. It was known as "ice." He told me about a friend of his who had gotten addicted and lost everything. A few years later he himself got addicted to "ice." Our family watched as this once friendly outgoing person that we loved became someone we didn't even recognize. He became paranoid and aggressive and eventually ended up in prison. While there he got the meth out of his system and became himself. When he was released the pull of addiction became too strong and he wound up in prison once again. While there he got his GED and was excited about starting his life afresh. He talked all the time about his kids and how he wanted to make up for lost time. He was ready to get back on his feet. When he was released he went back to work and spent time with his kids. He seemed to be happy once again and was trying to move forward with his life. But the addiction, just like the fabled sirens started calling out to him. On a visit to his Parole Officer he tested positive for meth. He was going to be sent to a rehab, but never made it. He had one last party the night before, passed out on the side of the road, and was hit by a car. At 35 my brother was dead. We are all still trying to cope with his death. A good man who meant so much to us and who had touched our lives so much was taken from us -- a casualty of drugs. His kids were robbed of their father, our mom of her son, me of my brother. I love my brother so much and miss him everyday. That smile. The laughter. The stories. I'll always remember him. Jamie, I miss you.
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