BANGOR – When the Maine Attorney General recently released a report on drug overdose deaths, the types of drugs killing Mainers came as no surprise to a Bangor mother.
Nichole Cyr is the mother of Millinocket teenager Hunter Archie, who was living in Bangor earlier this year when he died in a drug overdose. She said two drugs caused his death — one, a deadly painkiller and the second, a powerfully addictive stimulant.
“Cocaine and fentanyl,” Cyr said, listing the drugs in her son’s system. “The people are cutting this stuff with fentanyl. Fentanyl is killing people.”
Her son died Jan. 31 at an apartment on Mitchell Street. The investigation is ongoing.
“I’ve learned that there has been a lot of deaths after my son,” Cyr said Thursday.
Bangor police responded to 137 suspected overdoses in 2018 that resulted in 21 deaths, according to spokesman Sgt. Wade Betters.
A recently released report by the Maine Attorney General’s office states 18 of the Bangor deaths last year involved opioids.
“I really want to know who sold my son the junk,” said Cyr.
The AG’s report states opioid pain killers were connected to 80 percent of the 354 drug overdose deaths in 2018, and fentanyl was linked to 217 of them.
That’s a 15 percent decrease compared to 2017, where 417 Mainers died in drug overdoses.
Deaths caused by methamphetamines have risen in recent years, and cocaine-related deadly poisonings account for 25 percent.
“They’re literally cutting the cocaine with fentanyl, now,” Cyr said. “That’s scary. People think that they’re going to get up, and they’re actually getting to go down, you know, and it can possibly kill them.”
Cocaine-involved deaths totaled 90 in 2018 and meth-related deaths increased 62 percent from 16 in 2017 to 26 last year.
“Just think of what Hunter did and stop using, if you are,” Cyr pleaded.
She said the key to recovery is to stay alive.