FREMONT, OH (WTOL) - In the month of October there were 15 reported overdoses in Sandusky County. As of November 14th, there was already a total of ten reported overdoses this month. Six overdoses were reported in the last week according to the mayor of Fremont.
Those numbers have the community wanting to learn more, and the families directly affected seeking change.
Rae Pickett drove from Washington D.C. to Fremont two times in the past ten days. The first was when her cousin Kyle overdosed on heroin and was admitted to the hospital. The second trip was this week after her cousin Joey died from a heroin overdose just a week after completing treatment.
"For me to just sit in D.C. and complain is not good enough," explained Rae Pickett, Joey and Kyle's cousin. "I can't just come here to mourn. I have to do something. I don't know what that something is, but I really hope that tonight we can figure out what it is and make a commitment to doing it so that we can stop this."
Rae attended Fremont's Addiction Resource Awareness event after she says her family couldn't get the help they needed.
"It's really hard for a lot of families who think like I used to think that if you just want help, you can get it because that's not what we're living with,"
said Rae. "Joey and Kyle want help, we want help, we can't even get therapy here."
With one cousin gone and the other in jail due to drug related crimes. Rae and her family want a better solution for the future.
"We have to stand up and say we're not ashamed, but we deserve respect and dignity and we deserve resources so that we can fight this," said Rae.
Fremont's mayor says they're working to increase their drug enforcement team and want to bring more awareness about the resources available. Bringing together the resources available in their community for those addicted to drugs was the reason they put together the Addiction Resource Awareness event on Wednesday.
Community members packed into Fremont's Municipal Court to learn more about how to handle the situation closely affecting their community.
"It's important to me just as well as it is anyone else and as the leader I am going to continue to fight with our citizens to try to bring some valuable resources to address the issue," said Mayor Daniel Sanchez.
Mayor Sanchez says he too has been affected by the heroin epidemic and this is just the beginning of Fremont's efforts to fight back.
If you are interested in helping Rae and her family pay for funeral expenses for their 25-year-old cousin Joey you can donate to a fundraising page they created.