Jacob's Journey

The Other Pandemic

Every year over 10 million Americans use heroin or synthetic opioids.

Over 108,000 opioid overdose in 2022, which continues to get worse year over year!

Jacob’s Journey…a promising young life ended too soon.

I had a talent and passion for drumming that was as strong as my love for music. I lived for drumming, until I didn’t. Here is my story.

My fatal journey began in 2010, as a freshman in high school when I began smoking marijuana. My curiosity and desire to escape grew stronger and I began experimenting with ecstasy, mushrooms, acid and eventually heroin. As each year passed, each experiment drove me closer and closer to the edge until I overdosed. I came from a stable family, and I knew my parents were concerned. My sister and I knew, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that our parents loved us, but something I had dabbled in, soon became an addiction that I thought I could control.

I successfully completed two rounds of rehabilitation but the yearning for heroin was greater than I could handle. I overdosed a second time in my home. I knew I was almost gone that time, but the paramedics revived me. I heard my parents say, “We can defeat this.” I wanted to believe them, but I knew down deep that I was the one who had to defeat it.

Eventually, we decided that I should attend Recovery Unplugged Rehab in Austin, Texas. I learned a lot there. I also struggled there.   I was in and out of Recovery Unplugged three times. Sometimes I was clean and thriving with a steady job and a network of recovering friends who helped me and whom I was able to help. I hated being an addict, so I kept fighting.

I had my third overdose at a sober living home, and I know it devastated my parents. They begged and pleaded with me to resolve to stay clean and choose life. It was indeed a difficult time for all of us. They loved me enough to stop enabling me, get me the necessary help and then they put the ball in my court.  I tried really hard.

But, my last overdose, in an empty parking lot, was the fatal dose. September 11, 2019. Late at night. Alone. Accidentally.


Jacob Andrew Burdette
October 11, 1996 – September 11, 2019


The rise in opioid deaths is staggering. Over 841,000 people have died from an opioid overdose since 1999. In more recent years, the increase in deaths has been directly related to illicitly manufactured fentanyl.


Here we have compiled additional information about drug and opioid addiction along with assistance programs.