Is Being “California Sober” Really Being In Recovery?
The idea of somebody who is in recovery from addiction and describes...
Actor Logan Williams was only sixteen years old when, a week shy of his seventeenth birthday, he died suddenly on April 2nd of 2020. Tragically, however, a coroner’s report has recently confirmed suspicions that the cause of his death was acute toxicity from an overdose of the opiate drug fentanyl, a dangerous synthetic opioid that can be up to 40 times more powerful than heroin.
This finding confirms preliminary results released in May of 2020, and the drug, which has been observed to be lethal even in small amounts, was detected in his system at a dose that has previously been associated with fatalities.
Known for his role as young Barry Allen on The Flash, Williams had also appeared in several episodes of the Hallmark series When Calls the Heart, the ABC sci-fi series The Whispers and an episode of Supernatural.
Costars like Grant Gustin, Erin Krakow, John Wesley Shipp, and Christian M Cooper publicly expressed their grief and condolences after hearing of Williams’ passing, mourning the loss of his incredible potential, exceptional talent, and infectious spirit. But like many who of those who suffer from substance use disorders, Williams struggled with hidden mental health concerns.
In an interview with the New York Post, his mother Marylse Williams reports the stress of auditions as one of the factors that drove him towards drug use, noting that he had chosen to take a break from the profession at age 13 after beginning acting at age 9. But it seems like his story has less in common with other star-studded tales of celebrity addiction than with the countless ordinary tragedies that have come with the opioid epidemic.
“I know there’s a stigma of child stars, but he was not a star. He was up and coming,” Marylse says.
At the time of his death, Williams had already been struggling with addiction for three years, having begun smoking marijuana and then moved on to harder drugs. And though Marylse tried “everything humanly possible” to help her son, even remortgaging her home to pay for his treatment, eventually the Ministry of Children and Family Development stepped in and took the Vancouver native into their care in 2019.
Though Williams was offered support services, including residential treatment, their report shows that he often “declined to participate.” Instead, his downward spiral resulted in an initial overdose in February of 2020 that left him with a significant brian injury that resulted in problems with his memory and functioning.
On the night of his death, Williams was reported missing from his group residence and returned appearing “agitated and under the influence.” He appeared to be sleeping during the staff’s hourly checks, but in the morning he was found to be unresponsive and had stopped breathing.
Drug paraphernalia was later discovered near his body. There appear to be no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death, which was ruled accidental. And a last conversation between Williams and his mother makes her confident that he did not want to die.
“He said to me, ‘Mom, I’m gonna get clean. I’m going to get better. And I want my new life to start,” she reflects.
Of course, he never got the chance. Nor did he get the chance to pursue his dream of getting back into the entertainment industry, aspirations that were one reason that Marylse made an effort to keep Williams’ addiction out of the public eye.
“We didn’t want people to know because of the judgment, because of the embarrassment, because of the criticism. We wanted it to go away…He was in so much pain and he was so ashamed,” she says.
Now, though, she is speaking out in the hopes that doing so will create more awareness around this critical issue, hoping that her son’s legacy can help “one or five or 100 people to somehow heal and get help.”
“His death is not going to be in vain…he’s going to help a lot of people down the road,” she said.
If you or someone you love has been struggling with substance abuse, there is no time to waste in reaching out to Reco Intensive. The sooner you make the decision to get help, the sooner our professional staff can help you get back on the road to RECOvery, ensuring that your own story of addiction will have a happier ending. Call RECO Intensive today at (561) 464-6533. Let’s get back to a brighter future.
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