Credit: Ryan Caron King for WNPR

Credit: Ryan Caron King for WNPR



By Ryan Caron King

Sherwood Taylor remembered the time he saw a friend die of an overdose, just feet away from where he sat on his bed in his Hartford apartment.

“Matter of fact, that chair right there, he fell out of it. Boom,” Taylor said. “I said: Mike! I don’t hear him breathing no more. So I get up, I snap. So I call 911, said a guy OD’d here. And they did work on him. But he died. They carried him out of here in a body bag.”

At the age of 76, Taylor defies statistics. He’s been using heroin for more than 50 years. The average drug user will die 15 to 20 years after they start using. So Taylor’s seen his fair share of overdoses — and he’s seen a change in the way heroin users try to stop ODs.

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