Quantcast

Clearwater mom to speak at drug abuse vigil - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Clearwater mom to speak at drug abuse vigil

Posted: Updated:
Coni Pappas Coni Pappas
CLEARWATER, FL (WFLA) -

Coni Pappas says drugs devastated her family. Although she's never been an addict, she's felt the pain of drug abuse for decades.

"Three generations and my story's common. I mean, drug abuse and addiction runs often in families," explained Pappas.

Pappas' son Nicholas, 23, died from a cocaine overdose in 2005. He was set to graduate from USF the following month.

"He was an amazing, amazing kid," Pappas said.

Her ex-husband, who battled drugs for decades, died a few years later. Now their youngest son, Michael, is in his forth round of rehab for prescription drug abuse. Pappas recently adopted Michael's 3-year-old son, who was born addicted to opiates.

"He was whisked off to the neo-natal unit at Mease. He was there almost 9 weeks and was detoxed," she explained.

He's healthy now and Pappas prays he won't start using when he gets older. Pappas opened a yoga studio 5 years ago. She says yoga is a great form of therapy and now she's finding another way to help in her healing. She's sharing her story in hopes it will bring greater awareness.

"I'm putting myself out there. I'm just like okay, here this is what happened to me. It can happen to you," she said.

Pappas recently gave her first anti-drug presentation to students at Countryside High School. She'll speak out Thursday night at a vigil for the Pinellas County Chapter of Narcotics Overdose Prevention and Education, or NOPE.

"I think we kind of have to all do it together. I think the schools, the doctors have to work together. We have to talk about it. We have to stop keeping it in the shadows like it's something to be ashamed."

The public vigil to remember drug and alcohol abuse victims starts at 7 p.m. at Largo Central Park.

  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Mold takes over St. Pete condo, creeps into neighbors' homes

    Mold takes over St. Pete condo, creeps into neighbors' homes

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:48 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:48:06 GMT
    Josephine Ramos is literally sick about the toxic black mold growing in the St. Petersburg condominium beside hers. She's been feeling ill for months with headaches and breathing problems. Recently, she had peak inside the condo next doors and couldn't believe her eyes.
    Josephine Ramos is literally sick about the toxic black mold growing in the St. Petersburg condominium beside hers. She's been feeling ill for months with headaches and breathing problems. Recently, she had peak inside the condo next doors and couldn't believe her eyes.
  • Lakeland neighborhood has continuing water problems, asks 8OYS for help

    Lakeland neighborhood has continuing water problems, asks 8OYS for help

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:03 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:03:34 GMT
    Some Lakeland residents are tired of wondering whether they'll have water at home. Over the past month, they tell 8 On Your Side that they've lost water with no warning at least five times. And what's worse, the water stays off for up to eight hours at a time
    Some Lakeland residents are tired of wondering whether they'll have water at home. Over the past month, they tell 8 On Your Side that they've lost water with no warning at least five times. And what's worse, the water stays off for up to eight hours at a time
  • Abercrombie dropping logo to boost brand

    Abercrombie dropping logo to boost brand

    Friday, August 29 2014 7:15 AM EDT2014-08-29 11:15:46 GMT
    The Abercrombie & Fitch logo has lost the power it once wielded, so the struggling teen retailer plans to strip off the once-prized logo from its clothing. Shares tumbled Thursday after it reported weak sales as more teens shop elsewhere. 
    The Abercrombie & Fitch logo has lost the power it once wielded, so the struggling teen retailer plans to strip off the once-prized logo from its clothing. Shares tumbled Thursday after it reported weak sales as more teens shop elsewhere. 
  • NewsMore>>

  • Police: 3 dead in Brooksville shooting

    Police: 3 dead in Brooksville shooting

    Saturday, August 30 2014 12:51 AM EDT2014-08-30 04:51:46 GMT
    Brooksville Police say at least three people have been killed and a fourth person was flown to a hospital after a shooting at a home near Main Street on Friday night.
    Brooksville Police say at least three people have been killed and a fourth person was flown to a hospital after a shooting at a home near Main Street on Friday night.
  • Pepin supports 64oz growlers, regulations

    Pepin supports 64oz growlers, regulations

    Friday, August 29 2014 10:29 PM EDT2014-08-30 02:29:28 GMT
    He's the president of Pepin Distributing but he's extending an olive branch to craft brewers in Florida.“One key piece of misinformation is that we are opposed to a 64 ounce growler, we support a 64 ounce growler,” said Tom Pepin.
    He's the president of Pepin Distributing but he's extending an olive branch to craft brewers in Florida.“One key piece of misinformation is that we are opposed to a 64 ounce growler, we support a 64 ounce growler,” said Tom Pepin.
  • Riverview traffic light turned on following crashes

    Riverview traffic light turned on following crashes

    Friday, August 29 2014 10:08 PM EDT2014-08-30 02:08:02 GMT
    Two days ago, a newly installed traffic light on a busy Big Bend road in Southern Hillsborough County was not working.Power had not been supplied to the light yet, but that light is on after two crashes sent drivers to the hospital.
    Two days ago, a newly installed traffic light on a busy Big Bend road in Southern Hillsborough County was not working.Power had not been supplied to the light yet, but that light is on after two crashes sent drivers to the hospital.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

3221 South Evans Street
Greenville N.C. 27834

Telephone: 252.355.8500
Fax: 252.355.8568
Email: newsdesk@wnct.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.