Former Cop Runs For Charity in Boston Marathon After Overcoming Addiction

Danny Dwyer, a former Boston Police officer, intends to show his appreciation to the community by running in the Boston Marathon this year. Before he had a moment of clarity, Dwyer had lived for four years under a bridge in Boston North End. Dwyer eventually committed to starting a fresh after finding the treatment for his drug addiction. His motive is to inspire people who are going through similar battles that he had at some point in his lifetime. (Boston Marathon)

Dwyer told CBS Boston of how he was first introduced to drugs. Marijuana was his introductory drug at the age of eight years and advanced to a variety of substances over time. He said that he had begun to build a tolerance. “You know, sleeping pills and smoking marijuana,” said Dwyer. Despite the fact that Dwyer was using drugs in his early life, it did not prevent him from developing his law enforcement career. Before he became a Boston police officer, he had served in the Air Force, Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department, and the Air National Guard.

Dwyer injured his knee in the process of chasing after an armed robbery suspect, bringing his career to a halt. He became used to the opioid painkillers which at that time proved useful in nursing his injuries. He told CBS Boston with the bitterness of how he was stuck in such a situation as a police officer. “I’m afraid to tell anybody about it because I am so embarrassed and ashamed that I failed, that’s how I felt, you know?” said Dwyer. His continued use of opioids made him lose everything.

Dwyer said that somewhere along the way, there was a breakdown. He cannot categorize it if it was physical, moral or whether there was an occurrence that led towards the progression. Having lost his home in the undertaking, Dwyer admitted to having overdosed twice. “I remember being angry when I was brought back. I felt like I couldn’t even die correctly”, he said.

He found the inspiration to change his life for the better. He told CBS Boston about his conscience of not wanting to die in that kind of a situation but to be remembered for the good things he had done. “I just had this moment of clarity that, I’m going to die and I don’t want to die like this” said Dwyer. He came to the decision of running after checking into treatment regarding his drug use.

Dwyer will be among the 30,000 participants in Boston Marathon on 17th April running in the 26.2-mile distance. Lazarus House received more than $8,000 that was raised by Dwyer to show his appreciation in giving back to the community. Lazarus House is a homeless shelter and food pantry situated in Lawrence, Massachusetts. Dwyer feels that he can be a symbol of hope to other people by participating in the Boston Marathon. Since he can reach his hands back, he believes that with that responsibility people would have the idea that not everything is always perfect, but they can always find a solution to a problem.

“You need to allow people around you to help you and show you a way out. You need to start building that of foundation”, Dwyer expressed his initiative to the CBS Boston.