Life Stories ›

Richmond Remembers Those Lost to Overdose

Getty Images / EyeEm / Huw Morgan

Richmond Remembers Those Lost to Overdose

Thursday, Aug. 31 is International Overdose Awareness Day. Given the variety of perspectives on drug addiction, it can be difficult for survivors to honor their loved one while acknowledging the role drugs played in their death. But with an estimated 190,000 deaths minimum worldwide due to overdose, attitudes toward this often-taboo topic are changing. Below are some articles that show the shifting approach to remembering those lost to an overdose:

'She Wanted to Live': When Obituaries Are Honest About Addiction
In 2017, more and more survivors are speaking out about their loved ones' addiction deaths

Addiction, Suicide, and Obituaries
Read about the beginnings of the cultural shift in attitudes towards candidly acknowledging drug use and other sensitive topics in obituaries.

52 Weeks, 52 Faces
Opioid addiction is rapidly rising, and, according to the United Nations, opioids now account for the majority of overdose deaths. As the death toll mounts, families are increasingly using every avenue available to plead for help and awareness. Read more on how obituaries are playing a critical role in these efforts, and see the faces of those lost to this growing disease.

Famous Faces of Addiction
These high-profile deaths can provide a platform for greater awareness of the non-discriminatory nature of drug abuse. Click here to view a slideshow of prominent figures who struggled with addiction.


International Overdose Awareness Day is an organization that "aims to raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related death." Learn more about ways you can give and receive help here