This week I submitted a story on Families Against Narcotics, also known as FAN. However, the main focus of my story wasn’t on FAN at all. It was on Phil Pavona.
Phil Pavona is your typical Okemos dad. He has five kids, a wife, and a lot of cats. He lives in the suburbs and is retired. At first glance, you wouldn’t think he has had any experiences related to addiction. His face isn’t the stereotypical face that comes to mind when most think of addiction. But when I interviewed him, he told me: “I’m the face of addiction.”
Phil experience the issue of addiction through his son Eric. Eric was addicted to heroin and unfortunately, lost the battle in August of 2011.
A typical interview lasts maybe 20 minutes. I sat down with Phil for almost three hours. He started from the beginning and opened up to me, sharing his story and everything his family went through.
I left his house feeling like a different person. It’s crazy how much the people I come across as a reporter really do affect me.I teared up during the interview, cried in the car after, and then when it came time for me to write and piece his story together, I couldn’t have been anymore scared.
How could I fit this man’s story into a two-minute package and do it with justice? There’s no way.
I did my best though. And I must say, I am proud to be a reporter and share people’s stories for the rest of my life. This is what I am meant to do. I can feel it.
Here is the link to Phil’s story: