Jessica Lilly Published

LISTEN: What's It Like to Grow Up with a Parent Struggling with Addiction?


For a generation of Appalachians, growing up with a parent addicted or abusing drugs is a way of life. Kristina Weaver, or Breezie, grew up in southern West Virginia with a loving family and father who struggled with addiction. Her father, David Siers, died in June of 2015 of a heroin overdose.

Drug fatal overdoses are the leading cause of injury deaths in the US and Appalachian communities are among the worst hit by the epidemic. The latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that West Virginia has the highest rate of drug overdoses. The top five states also include two other Appalachian states, Kentucky and Ohio.

Kristina Weaver hopes that by sharing her story and the story of her relationship with her father, it might help someone else.

David served in the Army National Guard and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

You can listen to more about the opioid epidemic in the latest Inside Appalachia episode, called

Generation of Addiction Inside Appalachia.