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K.C. Conklin’s song “Sober” debuted in January, reaching the Top 100 on the I-Tunes Hip Hop Chart and grabbing more than 1 million views online and through social media.
But that’s not the only amazing thing about this 31-year-old Wallingford resident. The real story is his comeback from the depths of opioid addiction with the help of Rushford and the Hartford HealthCare Behavioral Health Network.
Conklin to health and town officials announced the Meriden Opioid Referral for Recovery (MORR) program. Fueled by a $2-million federal grant, it is a partnership between Rushford, MidState Medical Center, the Hartford HealthCare (HHC) Behavioral Health Network (BHN) and the City of Meriden fire, police and ambulance.
The monies fund the purchase of Narcan kits for first responders, makes Rushford clinicians and caseworkers available to first responders and provides training to police on mental health and addiction, all as part of an overall approach to recovery that goes beyond the vicious cycle of treatment and relapse.
“Addiction can be a very, very dark and lonely place,” said Conklin, who was born in Meriden. “I think a grant like this is so important to help people that are struggling on their terms. This can really help change and save lives.”Rushford and the Hartford HealthCare Behavioral Health Network offer Medication Assisted Treatment Close to Home (MATCH) programs for treatment of addiction to drugs or alcohol. For more information, go to www.matchrecovery.org
More than seven decades after he served in World War II, John Faenza of Newington has received the highest possible military honor an American can receive from the French people. With his wife, children, friends and former co-workers by his side, the 93-year-old Cedar Mountain Commons resident was awarded an honorary French Knight of the Legion of Honor.“I’m speechless,” said Faenza, who was a sergeant in the U. S. Army during World War II, assigned to a bomber wing in France that helped liberate the country near the war’s end.
“The mission (of the bomber wing) was to conduct bombing missions throughout France and Germany,” said Wayne Rioux, veterans liaison for Hartford HealthCare. “His job was to fly into enemy territory while they were receiving flak, be successful in the mission and come back home,”French Consul General Anne Claire Legendre traveled from New York to personally pin this medal on a tearful and surprised Faenza.“I’m here to express our deepest gratitude for the risks that you took and the sacrifice that you were willing to make to liberate my country,” Legendre said. “This is the highest honor, created in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, who was the French emperor at the time. The support of the Allied forces coming from the U.S. was critical not only to our nation but to our lives personally.”
Learn more about Cedar Mountain Commons here.
Like their human counterparts, canine law enforcement officers risk injury – even their lives – to protect the public.
And Axel is a canine law enforcement officer in the form of a state-of-the-art, hands-on canine training simulator, able to simulate a gunshot wound, a blocked airway or a broken bone. He growls, whimpers and bleeds just like any animal in distress.
His purpose? To help law enforcement handlers assist their canine partners should they be injured in the course of their work, and allowing handlers to train for real-life scenarios in the safety of a simulated setting.“When we saw this dog, we saw an opportunity to help our state, local and federal police officers, said Steve Donahue from the Hartford HealthCare Center for Education, Simulation and Innovation (CESI), where Axel will make his home.
Learn more about the services offered by the Hartford HealthCare Center for Education, Simulation and Innovation here.