K ate O & Neil never thought she would write her sister's obituary. But when the family made preparations for the memorial this month, the task fell on O & Neill. She sat down at a kitchen table and wrote the story of how Madelyn Ellen Linsenmeir was fighting drug addiction.
Lichtenmeir of Burlington, Vermont, was only 30 when she died on October 7, leaving a three-year-old son to become a family member by mediating the realities of drug addiction.
"It is impossible to capture a person in an obituary, and above all someone whose adult life was largely defined by drug addiction," reads the obituary viral. "For some, Maddie was just a junkie – when they saw their addiction they stopped seeing her and what a loss for them, because Maddie was hilarious and warmhearted, fearless and resilient."
Lensmeir tried OxyContin First time at a high school party when she was 16. At 18, she used heroin.
On and off Rehab, losing custody of her son and eventually dying in a police custody hospital, Lensmeir's story is a raw one, felt and known by millions of Americans struggling with addiction amidst America's opioid crisis.
Interviews with family, friends and Linsenmeir's recovery program mentor also paint a picture of a woman who is loved for her kindness, perseverance and honesty.