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  • Tammi Ector

Love Your Neighbor - O'Brian

Have a Heart for O’Brian

Here is his story, told in his words about the hurts from the past that led him to become homeless, the help he currently receives at Serve City, and the hope he holds for his future moving forward.

Hurt – In 2017 I started picking up drugs with opiates. I had a lot of unresolved trauma. I got addicted to Percocet. Then I started using stronger things until 2021. Lots of drinking and using weed. I lost all hope for life. I didn’t care about life, friends, work. I got put out of my parents’ house for doing drugs with my brother. I went to Genesis [recovery program]. Then in Oct 2021 I went to sober living in Middletown. I never used while there. But depression or something got in way. I couldn’t pay rent. I went to the Hope House men’s shelter in June. I went cold turnkey. When I graduated, I got sent to sober living. I didn’t use, but I also didn’t care about working. Went to City Gospel Mission [in Cincinnati]. A friend let me move in. I got put out and came back up here. I’ve been here a month. I came here to do business.

Help – I’m clean now. I’m 28. I’m in Access Counseling and have therapy once a week. I have the best case manager ever, Bonnie. It helps to be in an environment that helps me to be social. I’m learning how to be around a group of people again. It took a while to get used to. Drugs made feel better if I was by myself. I recently had to go to Urgent Care and my case manager made sure I got there. Everyone at Serve City is great. I’m close with the staff.

Hope – I want to go to school to become railroad conductor/engineer. I’d like to go to the Railroad Engineering Development Institute in Atlanta. I used to ride the trains with my grandparents who worked on trains. I’ve connected with some of the conductors around here. I had my tempts. I want to earn them again. Despite my story, I'm not crazy. If people didn’t judge me and got me to know me, they would like me.

As an artist who loves photography, O’Brian describes himself as “unique.

Please have a heart for O’Brian, a unique young man.

To give to our Love Your Neighbor campaign please click the logo to donate online. To mail donations please send to:

Serve City 622 East Ave Hamilton, Ohio 45011.

*All proceeds will go to benefits our residents.

To learn more about the steps of our Move Forward housing program click here.

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