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.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Meth compounds troubles of N.C. foster children

Steve Hartsoe, The Associated Press
RUTHERFORDTON - In five years as foster parents, Betsy Lane and Rodrigo Hernandez have cared for many neglected children in need of a safe place to call home. But the brother and sister who arrived on a rainy night last year had troubles far worse than most.
The children had nothing. No games, no photos, no favorite blanket or stuffed animal. All their possessions were contaminated, and therefore all were destroyed. The elementary-school-aged siblings were even hosed down by emergency workers to wash away the toxic remnants of their home in rural Western North Carolina, a home that doubled as a methamphetamine lab.

"When I opened the door I was just sort of startled, because they looked so tired and so beaten down by the whole thing," Lane said. "They came in their socks."

The children were among the about 200 North Carolina youngsters found in the past two years living in homes where parents were cooking meth. While children from such homes make up a tiny fraction of those removed by the state, experts say they have scars deeper than those of other foster children, including exposure to the toxic chemicals used to make the highly addictive drug.

"These kids literally come with nothing," said Stacey Darbee, president of the N.C. Foster and Adoptive Parent Association. "They have some other problems that other kids won't have. They'll have asthma from breathing chemicals in."

Meth addiction often leads to psychotic or violent behavior as well as brain damage. People high on meth will often stay awake for days at a time, and if they're parents, that can mean children are left to feed, bathe and clothe themselves, as well as watch out for one other.

"I mean, some of these kids have never even brushed their teeth," said Hernandez, 50, who runs a recycling business. "The first thing to do is you have to set rules, because most of these kids come from homes where they have no rules. None. Zero."

The children of meth addicts also bring unwanted topics such as sex, drugs, and coarse language into foster homes, forcing parents to take extra precautions to protect their other children.

The rest of the story follows:


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