16 Nov Former Celtics Player Advocates for Recovery
Former Boston Celtics player, Chris Herren, spoke to 300 students at Northampton High School about the dangers of substance abuse. Chris Herren lost his career due to substance abuse during a 14 year addiction to drugs that included cocaine, oxycontin and eventually heroin.
Listening to speakers talk about the dangers of drugs as a teenager, Chris Herren recalls thinking that he would never be “that guy.” “At 18 years old, I truly believed I was above it,” Herren said. But at Boston College, when he walked into his dorm room to find his roommate and a female student doing cocaine on his desk. Chris recalls that the female student coaxed him into trying it. He said he had no idea that one line of cocaine would lead to a life centered around drugs and alcohol.
Now at 39 years old, the former Celtics player is 6 years clean and is telling his story to students across the country. As part of Northampton Prevention Week, Chris Herren shared how his drug abuse progressed to a full blown addiction that included 4 overdoses and 7 felonies and eventually cost him his NBA career.
Project Purple – The Herren Project
Chris says he shares his story with pride. He hopes his story reaches students and encourages them to stay away from alcohol and drugs. He speaks to the public over 250 times each year about his experiences with drug addiction and ways to avoid going down the road he travelled. Herren’s passion to help others has gone beyond high school auditoriums. In 2012, Herren started the Project Purple Initiative (The Herren Project). Project Purple is a non-profit foundation committed to assisting individuals and families struggling with addiction.
Celebrities Advocates for Recovery
Chris is among a handful of celebrities that openly speak about overcoming their substance abuse. Others such Jamie Lee Curtis, Macklemore, Russell Brand and Demi Lovato actively advocate against addiction through various foundations, speaking engagements and interactions with the media. They have been outspoken about the negative impacts that addiction had on their lives and the work they do to help others in need. Their impact on the war against drug abuse has been felt by adolescents and young adults across the country.
God willing, more people like Chris Herren, celebrities or not, will rise up and support alcohol and drug prevention.