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In memory of Christopher Michael (Ratliff) O’Connor

Created by Shirley Merle

Christopher Michael (Ratliff) O’Connor

Thank you for visiting the memorial I created in memory of my loved one.

Chris passed away at the age of 34. Coroner suspects it was due to meth. We are still waiting on the official cause.

Our lives changed on November 7, 2018 when we were contacted by the local coroner about Chris. My husband and I had not heard from Chris since Mother’s Day. He sounded so up beat and happy that day. He promised to call soon and set a date to go have dinner together. That call never came.

We called him, texted him, emailed him but no answer. This really wasn’t unusal for Chris, he would go, what I liked to call “going underground” for months at a time. Then out of the blue he would pop back up on the radar. Little did we know it was because of his drug use.

We heard that he had been using for a few years. First it was smoking it and ending with him shooting it into his arm. I never knew that you could do that.

As I am sure all parents do after a loss is, what did I do or didn’t do that made my baby turn to this horrible drug? Why didn’t I see the signs? Why didn’t he feel he could come to us so we could get him help?

There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think of Chris. I have finally made it to the point where I am not crying every 30 minutes. Sure, I still tear up when I think of Chris. I am not saying it is getting easier because I don’t believe it ever will be. This is my new reality and there is noth8ng I can do to change that.

I do have another son and a beautiful grandson that helps me to focus on the positive things in life. My husband has been my rock even though he is hurting as well.

This Memorial was created to commemorate a loved one's life and to let other families know they can turn to the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids for help when struggling with their son or daughter's substance use. Please consider sharing this page to increase awareness of substance use disorders and to provide hope and healing for others.

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