I met Sam a little less than 3 years ago, while watching the Jaywalker alumni softball team. I could immediately tell that he was fresh to town and was more than likely a Jaywalker by the sheepish look on his face. I introduced myself, and he told me that he had come from Caron Treatment Center for a wicked cocaine and alcohol addiction. I could tell right away that the drugs and alcohol had run their course, but that Sam was “done”. Little did I know that Sam would become my best friend over the next few years.
Sam went straight from the Landing to Solutions, so we were able to hang out quite a bit early on. He immediately got a sponsor, and began diligently working the steps. One of the greatest gifts of the program is getting to see the lights come on in another recovering addict/alcoholic. I could see the promises coming to fruition in Sam’s life. I got to witness a hopeless drug addict/alcoholic reconnect with his passions that were lost as a consequence of his addictions. We began fly-fishing with each other almost daily, and we really bonded through the sport.
I’ve never met a guy quite like Sam. He is one of the most selfless, generous and caring individuals I have ever come in contact with. Sam has taken countless other young men through the steps, and continues to work a solid program. Sam is always willing to lend a hand, and will take the shirt off his back for a stranger.
I’ve also never met someone who is as unintentionally funny as Sam is. Sam tends to speak in 3rd person. He refers to himself as “Daddy” and others as “Papi”. Sam is also a creature of habit, which could count towards his success in sobriety. His internal clock alerts him every evening promptly at 9:00pm, and he is in the sack shortly afterwards…no matter how good the show on the hunting channel is. He requires 10+ hours of sleep no matter what…even if the elk are in full rut, or there is 13 inches of fresh powder on Highlands. He chews exclusively Copenhagen Wintergreen Long Cut, and only eats out at Asian restaurants. He shouts when he’s on the phone, and he hates loud music. He showers 2-3 times per day, and cooks a mean egg sandwich every morning for breakfast. He washes his 2016 Toyota Tundra 3 times per week, and complains when you hop in the truck with muddy waders. The only thing he loves more than hunting and fishing, is buying new gear. He owns every piece of Sitka camouflage, and he has Asian Zoolander hair. Sam has an uncanny ability to make fun of himself. We can even laugh about how he was medically diagnosed with a rare, but critical condition known as Trichotillomania. This is an obsessive compulsive disorder characterized by the compulsive urge to pull out one’s hair, leading to hair loss, balding, distress, and social or functional impairment…yet Sam still claims that drugs weren’t his problem, they were his solution.
All jokes aside, Sam is an inspiration for newcomers and old-timers alike. His selflessness and positive attitude are contagious. One quote from the Big Book comes to mind when I think about Sam, “…there exists among us a fellowship, a friendliness, and an understanding which is indescribably wonderful”. Congrats on 3 years Sammy! Here’s to many more.
As Chief Executive Officer Bill provides leadership and manage all day-to-day operations of Jaywalker Lodge, an extended care residential addiction treatment program for adult men.