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Grieving family hopes obituary of their loved one's death will spur others to act

Posted at 6:24 PM, Aug 23, 2016

A Pennsylvania woman, who lost her younger brother to heroin Friday, wrote a powerful obituary in hopes that it will spur others to act. The obituary was published in Tuesday's News-Herald newspaper.

“Our brother was a heroin addict, who like many others before him and many others after, died becoming just another statistic," it reads. "His worldly possessions will fit into a trash bag, not even good enough for donating.”

Aaron Benedum's body was found Saturday in a basement of a home in Willoughby where he stayed. Jessica Harper, the author of the obit, said her 42-year-old brother died the day before.

"There is no wife or children to console," she wrote.

Harper said she wrote the obituary to spur others to act, whether it be addicts themselves or loved ones of addicts.

“It is never ever too late to help them, at least try," she said.

Ten years ago, Harper said her Benedum started down a dark path, first stealing painkillers from her, then switching to heroin.

“He hated heroin," she said. "He hated being an addict. He despised it."

Harper said she also lost her parents and step-sister to drug overdoes.

A service for Benedum will be held Friday.