Mother of teen who died of suspected fentanyl overdose speaks out

The mother, Destiny Stillman, identified the 17-year-old who died on Saturday from a reported fentanyl overdose as Michael Henderson.

Posted: May 20, 2021 6:03 PM
Updated: May 20, 2021 9:09 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The mother of a teen who died on May 15 from a suspected fentanyl overdose is speaking out. Destiny Stillman identified her son as 17-year-old Michael Henderson.

"Michael was a very beautiful soul. He had a very caring heart and he felt and loved very deeply," Stillman said. 

Stillman is driving from Florida to Eugene to make memorial arrangements for her son, who she said often used drugs to cope with depression.

Stillman said Michael would frequently use Xanax and suspect that he bought drugs containing fentanyl unknowingly. She said she believes drug overdose among youth is an epidemic in Eugene.

"I've heard since the time of my son's death that two more teens have died from an overdose in Eugene," Stillman said.

She admits that she has made mistakes in the past but hopes that other parents can be more aware.

"I popped pills before and Michael did the same thing," Stillman said. "It's knowing the signs of what makes the child want to buy the drugs. Parents need to recognize this before your child even does that."

Stillman hopes she can advocate for more resources once she gets back to Eugene.

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