I am blessed to have gotten to know Sean when I started taking meetings out to the Utah State Prison in December 2016. Sean was released from Prison on Halloween, he had planned to go to a sober living facility in Salt Lake, but for whatever reasons he went up to Ogden, his old stomping grounds. I had so much hope that Sean had a change of heart and mind during his last stint behind bars (as he wrote in one of his articles for the Lifeline).
The last time I saw Sean was Saturday, November 11th. I picked him up from the Front Runner Station and took him to the 12:30 p.m. meeting at the Alano Club. When he got in to my car, I could tell he was high. This made me so sad. I was going to ask Sean if he wanted to come to my house to help winterize my trailer and watch the Utes game with my family after the meeting, but due to his state, I didn’t feel comfortable making the offer. During the meeting we wrote on a piece of paper “Call anyone of us first before picking up and using” with my name and number and passed it around and had 4 other members that each had 10+ years of sobriety, put their contact info on it. We stayed after the meeting and introduced him to more people. I wanted to show him how the fellowship really does work, if you want it.
After we were done at the club, I took him to a half-way house to get an application of some sort and then dropped him off at the Trax Station. Little did I know that this parting hug and good bye would be our last. The next morning Sean didn’t show to meet Craig and myself for the 10 a.m. Sunday Breakfast Meeting at the Alano Club and it was during this meeting I received a call from Ogden Medical, they had found Sean passed away in one of their waiting rooms. They had gotten my number off a piece of paper they found in his pocket.
I have had a lot of mixed emotions due to Sean’s death. I find comfort that he is no longer suffering and will not have to fight this disease on a daily basis. I also find comfort that he is out of prison and free in a place that will not judge him for being an ex-con, etc. But with all of that comfort, I do catch myself having guilt. Did I do enough? If only I had invited him to my house to watch the game? What if I had confronted him about relapsing?
When it is all said and done I have to remember AA’s Responsibility Statement: I am Responsible. When anyone, anywhere, reaches out for help, I want the hand of AA always to be there. And for that: I am responsible. Rest easy my friend!