Making a Difference: Woman's fight against opioid addiction

Published: Jul. 18, 2018 at 8:26 PM CDT
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It kills more people than car crashes. According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, last year almost 900 Wisconsinites died from opioid overdose. It almost killed a Montello woman. She is a mom, wife, sister and daughter.

Jame Winn is sharing her raw, death-defying story to show people that addiction doesn’t discriminate.

Jame Winn never thought she'd be here or celebrate her birthday.

"I will be 38 this year,” said Jame Winn, recovering opiate addict.

For seven years she was addicted to opioids.

"I went from oxy to straight heroin,” said Winn.

The addiction started with pain medication prescribed for a back injury.

"I was so out of it all the time,” said Winn.

Before she knew it Jame said she was addicted.

"It's getting worse and worse and worse,” said Winn.

She lost her job. She couldn't take care of her kids.She lost everything. Life was a daze and she spent time behind bars.

"I did six and a half months. I said I was going to stay sober when I get out. I was high within an hour,” said Jame.

Her husband Michael tried to help her for years.

“If there's an excuse. I have heard it. I caught on quick. I knew something was up and I called her on it. We argued a lot because of it,” said Michael Fecht Jr., Jame’s husband.

"How I actually stopped. He video taped me falling off on the bed on to my face over and over again for like 20 minutes straight and when I was on coherent Sunday morning he asked ‘is this normal?’ And I watched this video my husband took of me and I said enough is enough,” said Winn.

Her journey to recovery began.

“My official stop date is January 18th, 2017,” said Winn.

"Jame was very broken,” said Deborah Johnson, Sauk Prairie St. Vincent De Paul CARE program.

Joan Mack and Deborah Johnson are with the Sauk Prairie St. Vincent De Paul CARE program.

They have dedicated their lives to help people who struggle with addiction.

"She put her sobriety first and she knew she had to,” said Mack.

They were by her side. Just incase, Jame ever looked back.

"If she was going to relapse it would be that day,” said Mack.

July 18th, 2017. Jame got a call.

"He goes what's wrong. I said my sister died,” said Winn.

Her sister Katie going through the same journey Jame was going through. Their mom Naomi found her.

"Just awful. I don't wish this on anybody. I really don't.I can't even tell you. It was the saddest day that you can ever imagine,” said Naomi Flemal, Jame’s mom.

"It's hard talking about her because like I said I wish she could have been here for this. This would have been a Katie moment. How many people are losing brothers, mothers and fathers and it's just like I just wish more people would stand up and getting involved in a community,” said Winn.

She's taking it one day at a time with her biggest supporters watching in the front row.

"Bring the girl back I know and she finally did,” said Fecht Jr.

Fighting the odds against addiction and using the darkest seven years of her life as a platform to save lives.