Former drug addicts share their story to help fight addiction in our area

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV)–In the last two years, 17 people have died from heroin related deaths in Brown County.

Two Green Bay residents are hoping to lower those numbers by sharing their story of addiction and survival.

“Sometimes you’ve got to fall to learn and I definitely fell.” Douglas Darby is a recovering heroin addict who has been sober for more than three years.

The track marks on his arms tell more than just the story of a junkie, they tell the story of survival.  

 “Never do I want to forget where I was.  Was it a bad part of my life? Yeah it was, but that’s every reason why I tell it so I never re-live it,” said Darby.

Darby and his friend Anthony Alvarado co-founded “Rise Together”—a non-profit organization that helps fight addiction in northeast Wisconsin.

Tuesday, they shared their story of recovery with students at NWTC.

“We are real. We are transparent. We are telling the truth. We don’t hold back and people can tell and within that we’re also telling a great story of success and that’s motivating,” said Anthony Alvarado.

“We feed off of this.  This keeps us sober in our community,” said Darby.

Darby spent nearly three years in jail after robbing two Walgreens pharmacies to pay for his next fix.

“In the eyes of the courts, my debt to society is repaid.  In my own eyes and in my heart, it’s not,” he said.

But heroin addiction in our area is a growing problem.  In the last two years, 17 people have died from heroin related overdoses in Brown County alone.

“It is a much bigger problem than people are aware of and I think it is a much bigger problem than people want to acknowledge,” said Dr. John Teske, the Lead Counselor at NWTC. 

Teske also serves on the Brown Co. Heroin Task Force.

Lawmakers are also pushing to help fight heroin abuse.  Republican State Representative John Nygren, of Marinette, hoping to pass four bills that would help local communities fight heroin cases in their area.



Anthony Alvarado/”Rise Together” Co-Founder
09:36:12-09:36:20 “A life is priceless and if we just save 1 person in that
room within all the speeches that we do, that’s worth it to us.”

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