Red Deer parents talk about losing their son

Adam Looby was 36 when he died of an opioid overdose

Red Deer’s Jim and Janine Kristinson’s worst nightmare came true when their 36-year-old son died of a fentanyl overdose in March.

Now they are going through the same crisis with their younger son.

“Adam died with his name on a waiting list for treatment,” said Jim.

Their son Adam Looby, a furniture mover and roofer, was addicted to fentanyl for nearly 17 years.

Looby was clean for nearly four years after receiving treatment.

But her son got involved with the wrong crowd, Janine said, and he eventually overdosed and died leaving behind a two-year-old son.

The couple took part in the International Overdose Awareness Day event hosted by Turning Point at City Hall Park on Thursday.

Their younger son Joel, who is also having issues with drug addiction, was on a wait list for drug treatment in Calgary for four months.

“He almost died four times while he was waiting,” said Jim.

The couple say he is doing well these days.

“We have faith,” said Janine. “That’s what’s carried us through this.”

While they could not help their eldest son, the Kristinsons would like to see a three-step system with emergency care, detox and drug addiction rehab to help other users in Red Deer.

Turning Point registered nurse Stephanie Pettigrew said there are underlying causes that lead to addiction. She explained that drug users need to be loved and cared for like everyone else and need a place to belong.

“It is a human right to receive highest level of health care and this applies to people who use drugs,” said Pettigrew.

Janine said her son died with just a bag on his back because he sold all his belongings to feed his addiction.

“But he died with a legacy to help others, and we are carrying that on,” she said.

Just Posted

Christmas season in Red Deer begins with Festival of Trees

The kickoff to the Christmas season in Red Deer is upon us.… Continue reading

Judge allows Mr. Big evidence in murder trial

Two men accused of triple-murder admitted their involvement to undercover police

Red Deer agency supporting for LGBTQ2S+ youth

New report on LGBTQ2S+ youth from the Office of the Child and Youth Advocate

Four people arrested after gas and dash

Four people were arrested after an alleged gas and dash in two… Continue reading

VIDEO: Replay Red Deer: Nov. 19

Watch news highlights from the week of Nov. 13

Red Deer Christmas Bureau to help 1,300 children this year

Demand is high, but Red Deer always provides

CP Holiday train to stop in Ponoka for another year

The popular train will feature entertainment from Colin James and Emma-Lee

Kittens rescued after allegedly being tossed from vehicle

Couple finds abandoned kittens new home through Facebook

VIDEO: ‘Party bus’ goes up in flames in Vancouver

Fire crews responded to the late night blaze

Chicken crosses B.C. road, stops traffic

Rooster makes early morning commuters wait in Maple Ridge

Red Deerian honours her brother who died in a motorcycle collision

Houaida Haddad is encouraging Red Deer residents to donate blood

Red Deer County firefighters to be recognized for Waterton help

RCMP brass will give formal recognition Monday

Ron James tries to lighten humanity’s load through humour

The comedian returns to Red Deer for shows Dec. 1 and 2

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month