CLEVELAND — A Broadview Heights woman who was a graduate of Laurel School has been identified as one of two Ohio State students who died in an overdose last week at an off-campus residence.
Tiffany Iler, 21, was one of the students who died at a duplex on Lane Avenue. Prior to Ohio State, she attended Laurel School, the all-girls independent college preparatory school for grades K-12 in Shaker Heights.
While police and Ohio State have not said what caused the overdoses, the Office of Student Life sent out a message after the incident warning students about fake Adderall pills. The message says that some of the fake pills appear to contain fentanyl, which is causing an increase in overdoses and hospitalizations.
Ann V. Klotz, head of Laurel School, confirmed Iler was a student who graduated from the school in 2019, saying, "A young woman of promise and poise with a loving spirit, Tiffany Iler, Class of 2019, was a beloved member of the Laurel School community. Our hearts are broken, and we extend our deepest sympathies to her family and her treasured Laurel classmates."
According to Iler’s LinkedIn profile, she was a tutor at Seeds of Literacy, a nonprofit that provides free tutoring to adults working towards completing their GEDs.
A spokesperson for Seeds of Literacy remembered her and the time she spent with the organization.
“In the short time we knew Tiffany Iler, it was clear she was a remarkable young woman. The entire Seeds of Literacy family is saddened by her sudden passing. Despite a rigorous college schedule, and many other volunteer activities, she gave freely of her time as a math tutor in our Virtual Classroom, helping adults on the path to earning their GEDs. She will be missed by staff and students alike. We wish her family comfort and peace during this difficult time.”
She was also a blood donor ambassador for the American Red Cross. A spokesperson for the Red Cross confirmed Iler completed her volunteer application in May of 2021 but couldn’t provide any additional information.
A second student also died after being hospitalized in critical condition, the university confirmed. A third student was hospitalized but later released.
In light of what happened, the nonprofit Harm Reduction Ohio reported an increase in Nalaxone orders.
ADAMHS Board of Cuyahoga County recently launched a campaign to help raise awareness asking parents to talk to their kid about potential dangers with drug use.
Fentanyl laced in drugs for anxiety, focus or pain is not what Scott Osiecki, CEO of ADAMHS Board of Cuyahoga County, is used to seeing. He told News 5 there is an increase in drugs made to tap into a market beyond those addicted to opiates.
"No one is exempt from this," he said. "The differences are nearly undetectable, even for law enforcement and medical personnel as well. [Drug dealers] are doing it because it's basically cheap. They can cut other drugs with it and they also can get people hooked up to fentanyl or other drugs as well.
In Cuyahoga County, statistics from the board of health show a decline in drug deaths from heroin over the years, but a rise in fentanyl, which is up to 50 times stronger than heroin.
Click here to explore more data related to overdoses in Cuyahoga County.
While police continue to investigate what happened to Iler and two other Ohio State students, Osiecki told News 5 his team will continue to raise awareness here in Northeast Ohio, reaching out in all sorts of ways to help prevent overdoses.
In the past, the organization helped set up dozens of naloxone boxes throughout Cuyahoga County.
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ADAMHS offers a 24-hour hotline at 216-623-688 or by text at 741741 for its crisis, mental health and addiction line for anyone in need.
The Ohio Department of Health also allows residents to order doses of naloxone online here.
RELATED: Second Ohio State student dies in drug-related incident
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