Fighting the opioid epidemic with the Strength of Two

James Tansley
Oct 17, 2016 · 2 min read

One night earlier this year my phone rang and woke me from a deep sleep. The phone call delivered chilling news: a friend of mine had committed suicide after a long struggle with a heroin addiction. He was doing so well with rehab. His death was very much unexpected. Shortly before he passed he helped me with landscaping work at my house. He seemed to have a positive outlook on his future. He mentioned how he was saving money buy a new truck and start a landscaping business. I didn’t see any signs that he was in danger.

I couldn’t sleep that night. The only thing I could think about was how I could have saved him. What were the red flags? What did I miss? I constantly played scenarios in my head where I would save him and he’d still be here on this world.

Three young adults in my town died from a heroin overdose within one week of each other recently. My Facebook feed was filled with pictures of people that left behind their friends and families. There are many other stories just like this happening throughout the country. Over 28,000 people died in 2014 from prescription drugs and heroin.

I want to do something to prevent other people from waking up in the middle of the night to learn that a loved one has passed. I’m starting a movement to encourage people to watch over someone that is suicidal or at risk of experiencing a drug overdose. I’m launching an iOS app today to help this movement. It’s called Strength of Two and it is available for free on the App Store. It allows you to get regular updates from people at risk of suicide or drug overdose.

More information can be found at

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