August 26th, 2015 was the day Shawheen left this world. He was 30 years old. He left a big hole in many hearts. Shawheen was that guy that everyone instantly took a liking to. He connected to people on a deeper level and made people feel understood. Shawheen was one of a kind, he had a bold opinion and witty sense of humor that never created a dull moment when you were with him.
Shawheen was engaged in sobriety and in the recovery community in Portland and Eugene during his mid to late twenties. He was active within the AA/NA and OSYPAA (young people’s AA) community and at times sponsoring those new to sobriety. At his memorial I remember someone telling a story of Shawheen picking someone up for an early AM meeting however, this individual didn’t want to go so Shawheen preceded to go snuggle up with him until he was sufficiently uncomfortable to the point he got up out of bed and went to the meeting!
Shawheen was more than his addiction, he was also passionate about scientific research, medicine, and cycling. He was an incredibly successful student earning an honors degree in Biochemistry from Portland State University and was accepted into OHSU's School of Medicine. He enjoyed going on crazy long bike rides, racing down mountain bike trails (going way too fast), and falling down the mountain on a snowboard when his girlfriend would make him go. And he would never turn down the opportunity to indulge in a delicious burrito. He had so much to live for, a community that loved him, friends/family that cherished him but, sadly, like so many others struggled from a disease that took away his ability to see that.
Our hope is that not only does this walk begin to bring an awareness to the substance abuse recovery needs in Oregon; that it also creates a space that opens a dialogue about substance abuse addition in order to decrease the stigma within the general public. As well as decrease the stigma within the recovery community in regards to medication assisted sobriety (short/long term suboxone/methadone maintenance).
Thank for you reading, please dontate if you can, and join us on 9/29/18!
Untreated addiction kills 6-7 Oregonians a day.
Will you walk to help us change that?
On Saturday, September 29, 2018 Oregon Recovers will launch the Walk for Recovery, the first-ever benefit walk for addiction recovery in Oregon history. In partnership with national healthcare leader Kaiser Permanente, Oregon Recovers is creating a unique opportunity for people in recovery—and their friends and family—to strengthen their recovery by generating funds for the public education and advocacy work of Oregon Recovers.
The 2-mile benefit walk, which kicks-off with a rally in Shemanski Park, will take participants past many of the touchstone organizations – like Central City Concern and DePaul Treatment Center -- that help Oregonians suffering from addiction find their way out of the darkness of their disease and on to the path of long-term recovery.