Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


None of us can see into the future. If we did we might make different decisions.

This came up for me today because one of our managers brought a memorial card to the office that had a picture of a young woman on it. The kind of card one gets at a funeral or memorial service. Someone said a car hit her, though we're not sure of that either.

He said it had come in the mail to our newest property on Dana Street.

He’d talked to the woman once after we first bought the property. She'd been living there when we took possession, when it was still a coed facility.

She asked our manager if she could stay, but he told her it was now a men’s facility, that TLC doesn't offer coed housing. However, he offered to take her to one of our all female locations a few miles away. She declined.  And that was the last he saw of her.

And then we get this card. None of us knows what really happened. People get killed by cars all the time. No one said she was high when she died. There was just the mention of the accident.

But I wonder if she'd moved to our woman's house if she might not be alive today. We addicts seem to suffer more accidental deaths than the average person. Or maybe I think that because most of those I know are addicts.

It saddens me to see young people die an untimely death, no matter what the cause. But some part of me thinks if she'd stayed with us she might still be alive today.

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