Donald Trump

Man on Road to Recovery After Nearly Dying From Heroin Overdose

'The only thing good about addiction is beating it.'

It was almost a week ago when 27-year-old Michael Corsello walked out of the hospital and spoke to NBC10’s Aaron Baskerville after nearly dying from a heroin overdose.

“My hands were bound,” Corsello said while describing the hours he spent in the emergency room. “They said that I was freaking out. I was punching myself in the face. They said that I was screaming at the top of my lungs. I was going ballistic and then I just dropped.”

Corsello, a father of three, was one of 14 people who overdosed on fentanyl-laced heroin in a four-hour period in Camden, New Jersey back on Oct. 11. He held heroin in his hands immediately after leaving the hospital and told NBC10 he planned on using it as soon as he finished the interview. He also desperately wanted to share a message about the toll his addiction had taken on him.

"I have bald spots in my head," he said while fighting back tears. "I've gotta wear a Mohawk for the rest of my life. I've got scars all over my body because of this drug. I want every kid to understand, if they can stay away from this, I've ruined three families."

On Tuesday, Corsello spoke to NBC10 again, admitting that he hasn’t been there for his three children and that he used heroin after he finished last week’s interview.

“I used for the rest of the weekend,” Corsello said.

Little did Corsello know, his words Wednesday night would have an impact. When the founders of Liberation Way Rehabilitation in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania saw our report, they jumped into action.

“It was, ‘Go. How do we find him? Let’s give him an opportunity,’” said Liberation Way Chief Network Officer Michael Armstrong.

Staff members at the alcohol and drug rehab center spent several days trying to track Corsello down. They finally found him at his aunt’s home in Gloucester City, New Jersey where he had walked for an hour from Camden to beg for a shower. Now, less than a week after a near-fatal overdose, he’s agreed to get well.

“The only promise that I have to myself right now is that I’m going to be open to suggestions and really fight,” he said.

Tuesday marked day one of a 14-day detox for Corsello.

“An individual that goes through our program is kind of crawling, walking and then running,” Armstrong said.

Corsello was offered a free ride to a Fort Washington rehab center where phase two will be inpatient therapy.

“I didn’t realize the grasp it was gonna take on my life,” Corsello said. “So hold me accountable for picking up but I didn’t ask to be addicted. I didn’t ask to actually fall under this spell.”

While Corsello admits he’s scared about the battle he faces, he’s also optimistic.

“Terrified,” he said. “But I’m more scared of my past. I just have hope in the fact that I feel so good right now. I’m so excited for tomorrow for once.”

As the nation continues to deal with the devastating opioid epidemic, Armstrong believes one success story can go a long way.

“The ripple effect of him changing and getting better and finding recovery and giving that back is immeasurable,” Armstrong said.

Corsello knows however that his opportunity will be meaningless if he doesn’t put in the effort.

“The only thing good about addiction is beating it,” he said.

The proliferation of opioids continues to claim more lives across the nation than car crashes and homicides. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates 142 people die from a drug overdose every day. Half of the deaths are linked to opioids.

President Donald Trump declared the opioid epidemic a national emergency in August at the urging of the presidential opioid commission. The commission is led by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who has focused his last months in office around combating the opioid epidemic.

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