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Families Remember Drug Overdose Victims Through Cross Painting

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Purple crosses and purple ribbons, handmade by family members of drug overdose victims are waiting to to be put out in the community.

The crosses, one for every person in Knox County who died from drug overdose since January 1st, 2018.

"We're a group, we wish we had no members, we wish there was no need for our group. But it helps all of us to come together and share," said Debra Reagan, who started Listening Hearts.

Reagan's son, Clint, died 13 years ago after an accidental opioid overdose. She says it's taken time, but she isn't angry anymore and it's because of support groups like this one.

For others, like April Puckett, the loss of a loved one is still new.

Puckett's brother, Donnie Bowling Jr., nicknamed "Junior", died in June because of a drug overdose.

"I'm the oldest child and being the oldest child feels like you should be the first to go. And not this age either," said Puckett.

The crosses will be placed around the community in the following weeks to raise awareness.

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