This is dedicated to Travis Holappa who was kidnapped, tortured and murdered on July 25, 2004 in Northern Minnesota. This was all due to meth. I am Travis' mother and I wish to make this devastation turn into a better thing by educating and exposing the truth about meth, the dangers, and the deadly consequences it brings about to individuals and communities.

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Location: Colorado, United States

I want to do what I can to educate people about what is going on around the world with the meth problem. I want people to know about it BEFORE they even get the idea to want to try it. It is a dangerous drug and will ruin your life as well as all those who love you. I am on a mission on behalf of my only son, Travis.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Meth battles may have receded, but Binghamton death reflects lingering danger (New York) waging a war

Not long after two Bradford County deputies were killed while serving a methamphetamine-related in March 2004, the meth war turned slightly subdued. Law authorities kept up the awareness, but headline- grabbing arrests were less prevalent.

Fortunately, no one was fooled and state lawmakers, especially in New York, pushed hard for and passed tougher anti-meth laws last year. About that time the meth war front turned quiet, but not for long. In August, federal authorities indicted 16 Bradford County residents on meth trafficking charges.

Since then not much has stirred, but no one should have been fooled. Methamphetamine remains a menace. How very clear that was last week when a Binghamton man died after the meth lab he had set up in the basement of his girlfriend's house caught fire and killed him. The victim, 28-year-old Joshua S. Lamberg, died of smoke inhalation in what officials believe is the first meth-lab fatality in the state.

It was one of the very scenarios that state officials feared when they tackled legislation last year that made meth possession a felony and that added tougher laws for those making meth near children.

One of the more remarkable circumstances of this fatal crime is that the meth lab was set up in a city, rather than in a rural area where the odor and activity are often hard to detect. Whether neighbors had any inkling that a meth lab was in their midst isn't clear, but as the state's new meth enforcement begins to have an impact, the awareness component of the 2005 law can teach people to help authorities bust these labs.

State Sen. George H. Winner Jr., R-Elmira, a chief proponent of meth legislation, wrote in his weekly commentary that the meth awareness program included in last year's bill can help state officials and residents spot and report on meth making.

The information can easily be accessed at the Web site of the Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services. The wide range of topics, especially in the wake of the Binghamton fatality, is a reminder the that war against meth may be quiet, but it's hardly in retreat.


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