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Memorial Balloon Release and Guest Speakers to Honor Those Lost to Overdose Death in DeSoto County

Southaven, Miss. (August 25, 2016) – Wednesday, August 31 marks International Overdose Awareness Day, during which events are held across the world to raise awareness and honor those who have lost their lives to the disease of addiction. DeSoto County, Mississippi leads the state in heroin-related overdose deaths with over 20 in this year alone. It is up to our treatment facility, community leaders, neighbors and friends to join together and fight this growing epidemic.


Turning Point will host a press conference on recent drug-related overdose statistics, what is being done to combat them, and how members of the community can reach out for help. We hope you will join us for this event, as we pay tribute not only to those whom we have lost, but to the 23 million Americans who survived and are in long-term recovery.


Turning Point Southeast Regional Market Director Karen Morgan will emcee the event in the campus atrium, which will feature guest speakers actor John Mabry, who found his brother deceased from an overdose, DeSoto County Sheriff Bill Rasco and more.


During the event, a Proclamation by Southaven Mayor Darren Musselwhite will be read, designating August 31 Overdose Awareness Day in the City of Southaven. After the remarks, attendees will continue outside of the building to the Turning Point Recovery Fountain, where a prayer for the families left behind and a moment of silence will take place as a balloon is released for each overdose death in DeSoto County this year.


The event is free and open to the public. Media is asked to check in with Director of Public Relations Brian Sullivan upon arrival. Anyone sharing on social media is asked to use the hashtag #NoOneIsImmune.



August 31, 2016



2:30pm CST




Turning Point

340 Stateline Road

Southaven, MS 38671



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Karen Morgan, LADAC II

Southeast Regional Market Director

Turning Point


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John Mabry



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DeSoto County Sheriff Bill Rasco




Brian Sullivan

Director of Public Relations

Turning Point

349 Stateline Road | Southaven, MS 38671

P: 901.949.7926 Hotline: 888.614.2251



Turning Point provides the most comprehensive addiction treatment program in the country by going beyond the standard 30 day plan and treating persons struggling with addiction mentally and spiritually to break the cycle of repeated visits to treatment. Utilizing our campus environment we have the depth of caring staff, industry experience and clinical proficiency to effectively treat the disease of addiction for life. We specialize in alcohol addiction treatment, illegal drug addiction treatment and prescription drug addiction treatment, and offer: drug and alcohol intervention, clinical addiction assessments, medically supervised drug detox, residential/inpatient programs, intensive outpatient programs, christian drug rehab programs, drug addiction counseling and ongoing long term recovery care. Headquartered in Southaven, MS, the Turning Point admissions center is trained to assess and place the client into our Turning Point treatment center within a 1 hour time frame. This speed in service delivery and thorough commitment to the client long term allows the person struggling with addiction to get quickly on the road to recovery and create a life that’s worth living.



Karen Morgan is a native of Louisville, KY and has lived in the Memphis/Desoto County, MS area since 1982. In 1992 Karen entered the field of Addiction Counseling and earned her Tennessee License in 1997. She has worked for various local agencies and formed a private practice partnership with her mentor, Karen Dennis in 2007. Karen has served on a variety of community boards and currently serves on the executive board for the Memphis Area Prevention Coalition. She also serves on the Tennessee Addictions Counseling Licensure Board and the West Tennessee Chapter of the National Association of Addiction Counselors. She recently joined Tennessee Association of Alcohol, Drug & other Addiction Services (TAADAS). Currently Karen is the Market Director for the Southeast Region for Turning Point, which is based in Southaven, Miss. Karen’s primary focus is on educating the public about addiction and recovery to decrease stigma and to ensure treatment availability.



John Mabry serves as Strategic Partnerships Manager for Turning Point. He comes to the organization after graduating from Turning Point’s sister facility, The Treehouse. After having such a positive experience, John knew immediately he had to be a part of the growing company’s success. He experienced firsthand the amount of quality time and attention our treatment center’s staff puts into each and every client. Mabry is an inventor, actor and stuntman with 11 years in the Screen Actors Guild. He is also a triathlete. He accomplished all these feats after losing his leg below the knee in a car accident. John is also a Spokesperson for the Challenged Athletes Foundation, whose fundraising efforts serve to get people with physical disabilities access to sports. His acting and non-profit work have been featured in People magazine and USA Today. Mabry has been married for 12 years and has three kids.



The Desoto County Sheriff is elected at-large and serves a four-year term. The Sheriff is the highest ranking law enforcer in the county and has jurisdiction over the county. Administrative duties include serving as the county’s jailer and submitting a budget of his office to the Board of Supervisors. Bill Rasco has lived in DeSoto County his entire life. He was raised in a family whose values and service for others in DeSoto County have been respected for the past three generations. His father, the late Harry Rasco, and his mother, Jean Rasco, taught him early in life the importance of hard work, doing what is right, and serving others. He graduated from Horn Lake High School and worked as a farmer and ran the family business. He deeply cares about the people who are making their living and raising their children in DeSoto County. He is into his second term of being DeSoto County Sheriff and loves his job. He and his wife, Pam, live in Hernando and are members of Longview Point Baptist Church. They have four children, four granddaughters, and one grandson.


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