Addiction in Franklin County
Karen Sims photo 
Paula Sayword looks out from the ledge at Chaco Canyon where she and her partner, Karen Sims, created a funeral ritual for their granddaughter, Ashley Sims, who they raised as a daughter and lost to an accidental heroin overdose in December of 2012.

Poets of Franklin County: Soul Chant

Friday, September 19, 2014

Editor’s note: this is the second in a series of columns by Trish Crapo on poetry that explores aspects of addiction. Readers can find links to her first column on our website: www.recorder.com Ashley Sims died at the age of 22 of an accidental heroin overdose in her Greenfield apartment on Dec. 11, 2012. It was her grandmother Karen Sims’ birthday. Ashley had planned to come to Leyden that night for a celebratory dinner, said Paula Sayword, Sim’s partner and Ashley’s grandmother. “Instead, she was dead on the floor. She didn’t intend to die,” Sayword continued. “We never questioned whether it was on purpose.” Just … 0

Franklin County Opioid Task Force regroups, continues

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

GREENFIELD — The area Opioid Task Force met Tuesday for a look at the big picture of addiction in Franklin County and at reports from subcommittees working in various facets of the community problem. The meeting in the Greenfield Community College drew in the neighborhood of 100 people, with representatives of the Department … 0

Hoop dreams, heroin nightmares

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

GREENFIELD — Chris Herren made it from the midsize coastal city of Fall River to his home team, the Boston Celtics. His path was paved with stints in rehab as he struggled with escalating substance abuse running the gamut from alcohol to cocaine, crystal meth and heroin. From the early promise chronicled in … 0

Poets of Franklin County: What if I were inconsolable?

Friday, September 12, 2014

Editor’s note: this is the first of a series of columns by Trish Crapo on poetry that explores aspects of addiction. Showing your poems to other people can be tricky. What if whoever’s reading your poem hates it? … 0

Opioid Task Force to meet next week

Thursday, September 11, 2014

GREENFIELD — The re-named Opioid Task Force of Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region holds its first full meeting since spring next week, and its members haven’t been idle in that time. “We’re kind of turning the next corner on this thing,” said Franklin County Register of … 0

New funding comes through to track painkiller abuse

Friday, September 5, 2014

GREENFIELD — A $203,770 federal grant will help area drug abuse prevention and law enforcement agencies monitor painkiller abuse and track abuse trends with a new program. “This is an enormous boost in the efforts to fight the scourge of drug abuse that threatens our communities daily,” Northwestern … 0

Heroin trafficking charges for two Holyoke women

Friday, September 5, 2014

WHATELY — Two Holyoke women have been charged with trafficking in heroin after an Interstate 91 traffic stop netted 1,000 bags of the drug, according to police. There were also two small children in the car, according to police reports. Zeneida Gonzalez, 27, pleaded innocent in Greenfield District … 0

Guide at the end of the tunnel

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

GREENFIELD — Recovering from addiction is, famously, not easy. Recovery coaches might not be the answer, but they might have an answer, or know someone who does, or have some suggestions in the right direction. The prospect of … 0

New drug treatment option in Greenfield

Friday, August 15, 2014

GREENFIELD — Options for addiction treatment in Franklin County continue to tick upward, with a program new to the county set to open next month. Clinical and Support Options is preparing to open an intensive outpatient addiction treatment program, an “IOP” in treatment and insurance parlance. It will … 0

Narcan training set for Monday as overdoses spike in east

Friday, August 8, 2014

GREENFIELD — A distribution and training in the use of opioid overdose antidote Narcan is scheduled for Monday in the RECOVER Project office at the corner of Federal and Osgood streets. Opioid Education and Awareness Task Force coordinator Maris Hebble called attention to the training this week in … 0

Addiction treatment bill mandating automatic insurance coverage signed by Gov. Patrick

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Spurred by the ongoing heroin and opioid painkiller problem in the state, a wide-ranging emergency bill intended to increase access to addiction treatment by removing insurers from the early decision-making process, among other measures, cleared the Legislature Friday and was signed into law Wednesday. The bill, S.2142, passed … 0

Deerfield man charged with shoplifting, possession of heroin

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

GREENFIELD — A Deerfield man faces heroin and shoplifting charges after police say he tried to steal several DVDs from a local supermarket. Jacob Jarvenpaa, 32, whose last known address was given as being in Deerfield, pleaded innocent Wednesday in Greenfield District Court to charges of shoplifting and … 0

Andrews a lone vote against tougher heroin sentences

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

ORANGE — North Quabbin legislator Denise Andrews has come under fire for being the only member of the House of Representatives to vote against toughening penalties for heroin trafficking. The Republican candidate for the Second Franklin District House seat now held by Andrews has criticized the incumbent for … 3

Two arrested, syringes found in stolen car

Monday, August 4, 2014

GREENFIELD — Two Vermont men found themselves in handcuffs after police noticed the registration of the car they were in was expired. State trooper Ryan Czepiel pulled a Dodge Caravan over on the Mohawk Trail at about 1:59 p.m. Sunday for the expired registration, and quickly found out … 0

Vermont man arrested after struggle, chase

Thursday, July 31, 2014

DEERFIELD — A Vermont man facing heroin dealing charges and a slew of other offenses allegedly asked the Lord for help before fighting a state trooper and leading police on a high-speed chase that ended with him locking the doors of his disabled car and lighting a cigarette, … 0