To the Editor:

On February 16, 2013, I became well aware of our country’s new black plague.

My 22-year-old son, Trent, died of a heroin overdose, a problem that first began with opioid abuse. Over 37,000 people die annually, 1700 in Tennessee alone, from misuse of opioid drugs. This is a national epidemic that requires tough senatorial leadership that will address this problem head on.

Once you lose a child, you become an expert on a subject such as the opioid industry and you began to search for the truth.  The truth is, Marsha Blackburn never supported pharmaceutical companies because if she had, this heart broke father would never support her as Tennessee’s next United States Senator.

I know for a fact Marsha helped establish in Tennessee drug courts and effective treatment programs. Last March in the U.S. Congress, she introduced the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act 2.0, a bipartisan bill that increases civil and criminal penalties for bad actors and authorizes vital funding to combat the Opioid epidemic. She also cosponsored the DEA Enforcement and Authority Act to give the DEA the authority it needs to help law enforcement go after “bad actors”.

As a mother and grandmother, Congressman Marsha Blackburn knows how important it is to address this crisis head on that is hurting so many Tennessee families.

A vote for Marsha Blackburn for U.S. Senate may keep some of you from becoming an expert on opioid abuse, sadly like me.

Scotti Madison

Nashville, TN