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Is long term recovery possible?
Can someone achieve a drug-free life?
Gordy Weinand Tempe Greene Christi Murray Fermin Sanchez Glenn Sadler LaZ7e X Eventhen Lisa Arcaini Anthony Noble Raffaele Esposito Kenny Zaucha
© 2008 Narccncn International. .A.11 Rigbis Reserved. Grateful acknowledgment is made to L .. Ron Hubbard Library for permission to reproduce a selection from tile copyrighted WOTks of L Ron H u bbard.
NARCONON and the Nt\.RCONON logo are trademarks .. md service marks O'WTIed by the Association for Betler Living and Education lntemationai and! are used with its permission ..
Cover page: Miriam Tenorio, Narconon Graduate November 1998
Gordy Weinand is graduate Dumber 4 of the Narconon program.
and took off. I drove the car into the little town where I went to high school. The cops were waiting for me. The charges were stealing a car and aggravated assault.
Though I was free from prison, I had learned many bad habits there. Essentially I was still imprisoned
by ignorance and unhappiness. I
had lost all respect for the law and myself. My drug habit started in this reformatory, Drugs were easy to get, and I even learned to sell them. I was now a full fledged rebel on the loose.
I g. rew u.p it1. St. p. aul, Mi·.nnesota .. , ill a working class family. My
dad worked in the military and then became; a truck driver. My mother was a stay-at-home mom.
I was an excellent baseball player and such a good pitcher that I had dreams of being a major league player. Unfortunately that dream was cut short in 1955 when I got into trouble as a juvenile.
Prior to this, I had never been in trouble. This teenage prank had a profound influence on my life. The court sentenced me to thirty years in the St. Cloud Reformatory.
After seven years, I finally found
an attorney who could help me. He found that I had been prosecuted and convicted as an adult at the age of fifteen. The Minnesota Supreme Court overturned the conviction and I was a free man.
In 1966 I bad moved to Arizona to try and start a new life. The first person I hooked up with was a big time heroin dealer. I tried heroin a few times and then met some other people who used speed. I got into speed very heavily. I would get high
At age fifteen I was working for a neighbor cutting wood and doing general chores. When he refused
to pay me, I became angry, threw a stick at him, then jumped in his car
on speed and drink straight whiskey. I would sometimes stay awake
for two or three days at a time. However, I still somehow managed to work for a sign painting company.
One day a friend came by and told me he had been kicked out of his apartment. He asked if he could leave some things at my apartment and left. The next morning I was arrested for third degree burglary and eventually was sentenced to the Arizona State Prison. Believe it or not, this is when my life started changing for the better.
Gordy Meets Willie
My first job assignment in prison was working in the cannery. One day I was all a smoke break and I met Willie [William] Benitez. He was in prison for his third conviction for possession of heroin. Willie had been a heroin addict for 18 years. During the course of our conversation be asked me if I had ever been on drugs. When I told him my history, he asked me if I would be interested in participating in a
pro gram that he had just started. The name of the program was Narconon and its purpose was to help people get off of drugs, He explained that 1 would have to attend a meeting one night a week. I agreed, thinking that it was one way to get out of my cell during the week.
There were about 20 guys there the first time I went to a meeting. Willie was explaining what the program was all about and about the training drills. The guys were facing each other in chairs. I did the training
I later went on to open a retail store. I am married and have raised three beautiful daughters.
"I have been drug-free for 40 years."
drill, thinking it was a bit stupid, and then listened to the lecture that Willie gave which centered
on information that he had learned from a book. He had realized that drug addicts are not powerless but actually do have power to overcome addiction.
After the third session, I began to change my outlook. I felt better about myself. I felt confident and started to get rid of frustrations and hatreds that I had been carrying around since I was a child. I realized that I was not a stupid juvenile as I had been told, but that I had abilities and I could take control. This was truly the beginning of life for me.
New life Begins
After I had been in prison for about six months, Paramount Studios came to film the movie Riot in the prison. I was fortunate enougb to get a. part and to earn $4000 which I left prison with.
I immediately got a job and also worked to help expand Narconon. Willie continued to give lectures at his house and we started to promote the Narconon program at various events.
Withi116 months, in 1971, Willie decided to start the NarCODOl1 program in Los Angeles. We worked together installing carpet in order to earn money to keep Narconon going. Since then, I am proud to say that Narconon is now m 44 countries with over 120 centers and groups around the world.
Gordy visiting the Arizona State prison 40 years later
Lifetime Dream Comes True
Since 2003 I have worked full time as a Narconon staffmember. My lifetime dream had come true!
It is a great feeling to be able to be there when someone reaches out
and to be able to give back what bad been given to me. Many families who have someone on drugs ask
me for advice. My first advice is to find out if the addict really wants help. If they do, I would encourage them to call me personally. I will
say to them "The Narconon program works. I have been drug-free for 40 years. I am devoted to helping others have the success I have bad."
Graduate, First Narconon Program Arizona State Prison, 1967
wrote a Success Story when I graduated the Narconon program back
in early 2002, but I was motivated recently to write a followup story about how things are five years later.
Heroin Addict for 35 Years
As background, I am from an upper middle class family. Around age l7 my friends started pressuring me to try drugs. I started with morphine, then pot, heroin, crystal meth=pretty much everything! For the next 35 years I was a heroin addict My Life consisted of waking up sick and planning and plotting how I would get my next fix. I had to resort to crime in order to maintain my habit which led me in and out of the penal system" Prison seemed to have a revolving door for me because no matter how long I stayed incarcerated and clean, I would return to society and pick up where I left off. I would go in and out of treatment centers to no avail. I felt I was doomed to be a drug addict until I died.
I lost all trust from relatives and was ashamed to be around them because of my guilt My immediate family was devastated and not only did I almost bankrupt
" ... relapse is not a part of m.y recovery."
them but I took them through years of turmoil and heartache.
One day my mother received a flyer in the mail promoting the Narconon program and read it with interest. She made a call and decided that this might be the program that would work for me. I carne to the program and indeed it did work for me. It made total sense.
Not only did the program handle my drug problem but it also gave me the tools to handle any other problem in life. It restored my self-confidence, gave me a purpose to my life, and renewed my interest in life. I have earned the trust of my family back and I have learned to give rather than constantly take.
I have been staff with Narconon now for five years and really love being able to help people beat their addiction.
Now, having heard some rumor about addiction being a chronic relapsing brain disease, I'd like to go on record that relapse is not a part of my recovery. There is nothing wrong with my brain. Years ago my mother, in her
desperation, took me to a psychiatrist. He talked with me for 5 minutes, said I had a chemical imbalance, was "bi-polar" and prescribed me Prozac! Fortunately, I didn't take it and eventually found the Narconon program.
Once I permanently got off drugs, cleared the fog out with the sauna detoxification process, and then handled the issues that led me to drugs in the first place, my life and brain are completely normal. I don't fight and struggle on a daily basis to stay clean.
My cravings for drugs and the drug life style are gone. To have put me on medication for "my brain to function normally" would have continued my life
of drugs=not what I was wanting! To substitute one drug for another just continues the vicious cycle. And that's why I so love helping people get through the Narconon program. Then they are truly drug-free!
-- Tempe Greene Graduate, 2002
"I can't thank Narconon enough for teaching me the skills needed
to become a c.ontributing member of society,"
I think I was a pretty normal teeu.age.r. I we. Dtto.bi.gh school, graduated, and left for college.
I met some new friends and started hanging out with them. Then someone brought out some marijuana. I wanted to "fit
in," so I smoked with them, not seeing any harm in it. At first it was just a party scene, but it soon became a daily thing. Marijuana Jed to LSD, cocaine, crank, pills, hash, etc,
I wanted to spend Mother's Day of 2002 with my mom, so I decided that I wouldn't do any drugs that day and go see ber. When I got there, I started talking with them, and, before I realized it, I was say-
After I got my degree in Cosmetology, I moved in with my parents and opened
a beauty shop in our small town. I was the newest cosmetologist around and was making excellent money. Then that money started going right up my nose. The more money I had, tbe more cocaine I used. Then I started smoking it, and that
is when I realized I was too messed up to do my clients' hair. I went on a binge. Next thing I remember,
my parents informed me that they bad shut down my beauty shop due to me standing up my clients and told me I could no longer live under their roof. I got mad, packed my stuff and moved in with some friends.
ing that r needed help with my drug addiction. My parents were relieved that I was asking for help, and my Dad instantly got on the computer. He found several rehabs, printed off the information, laid it at the foot
of my bed and said, "You pick." I came to the data about Narconon and decided it was the one for me.
I had met Nathan while on the program. As the months went by, we came to realize we felt a deep connection for one another. We talked about our future together and ended up getting married in 2004. Nathan is a heavy machine operator for a logging company. I have been doing hair again, plus working for a school district. This allowed me to stay at horne and raise our son, who is almost 2 now. We also have a daughter on the way! I have been taking courses online and will soon have a degree in Human Resource Management.
Christi Murray, Graduate, July 2002 •
"Never in the, 22 years since have 1 felt the sllqhtest desire togo back to drugs,"
Iwas born in Madrid, Spain.
I started using. drugs when I was 18 years old. At age 24 I started using cocaine on the weekends. The other days were mostly marijuana, alcohol, and some LSD and speed.
Champion Car Racer
I was a professional race car driver, winner of four national championships. For seven years, I would stop using drugs for a few days prior to each race and would start up again after the race. When I was 31 and at the summit of my career, I started using heroin. I soon found I could not control my usage and had to give up racing . .I gradually spent all the money I had eamed-veveu selling my solid silver cups and trophies!
I knew from the get-go that I was fully committed to getting clean, but I bad no idea how much work it would take. When I finished the sauna program, I felt refreshed and ready to get on with the rest of the program. The life skills courses were hard but worth the effort.
Corne May 2008, I will have been clean for 6 years. I can't thank Narconon enough for teaching me the skills needed to become a contributing member of society. I continue to recommend Narconon to those who ask about rehabs. It changed my life forever. Thank you, Narconon!!!!
My parents allowed me to live
in their house for over four years while I tried to kick my addiction. Finally, my father took me to a psychiatrist to see if there was some kind of a solution. He told us tbat
I would be addicted for the rest of my life. Then all old druggie friend called and told me that she was totally cured and could help me. I didn't believe her, but she persisted until I finally agreed to go to the center-Narconon Mediterraneo,
I was skeptical about the program but I decided that at least it would keep me away from drugs for a time. Thus I was thoroughly surprised when, two months into my stay, I realized I was completely rehabilitated! I was back in touch
with life, feeling like I did when
I was 15 years old=totally alive, awake, and with great desires to do a lot of things.
My parents were amazed and delighted and helped me start a new life. I recovered my old girlfriend and married her. Many old druggie friends are now Narconon graduates. I set up my own company and had two children. Never in the 22 years since have I felt the slightest desire to go back to drugs.
My eternal thanks to L. Ron Hubbard and the Narconon program for giving me back my life!
With love, Fermin Sanchez, Spain Graduate
"I never worry about relapsing or going back to the life 1 had."
told me to call Narconon, Gary talked to me=not like I was just another crackhead, but like a friend. The next day I was on a plane to the center. I was scared to death, but I knew 1 had to do this or else I was going to end up dead.
was a real mess, strung out on crack cocaine, lying to myself and everyone around me. I did not care who I hurt in the process.
I wasn't sure about the program at first, but as I continued through it, and with tbe help oftbe wonderful staff,
I really started to see a difference in myself. I began to believe in myself agam.
Then one day my dog jumped into
my lap and just sat there, looking
up at me as if to say, "What are you doing to yourself?!" Ijust completely broke down! I pulled myself together enough to call my parents and admit
I had a problem. Now, it must have been some kind of miracle because they had just been watching a talk show about the Narconon program! When I got to their house, my mom
After I graduated, I joined the Navy and spent the next four years serving my country. I got married and had
a son. I worked at several jobs and was able to stay on track with my life thanks to the life skills I learned on
the program-skills I will be using for the rest of my life.
I have been clean for over 12 years now. My life is n.ot perfect, but I can tell you this-I never worry about relapsing or going back to the life I had. Now I am at a point in my life that I want to start doing my part in teaching and educating people about drug addiction.
The one thing I want everyone to know who reads my story is that you would not be reading my story at all if it was not for the Narconon program. Again I want to say thank you to the entire staff for saving my life.
Graduate, October 1995 •
Lazze's purpose is to keep youth busy with good things instead of doing drugs. He has a youth. center in a church basement with a music cafe, recording studio, photo lab, and study circles. Besides his normal work, he is a drug lecturer, photographer, poet, cartoonist, writer, model, artist and musician.
"Doing this program in the 80's,it left me feeling as clean as 1 had before doing any drugs at all."
I nfluenced by my favorite mu~ sicians., I.s.taIt.ed using drugs. at the age of 10. But my drug
experiences led to a dead end. They did not help me find a "secret spot," or enable me to create "amazing notes" that people would love me for. Instead, they left me with bad effects which lasted for a longtime.
checked around and found out that Narconon was a rehab program using the methodology of L. Ron Hubbard. Amazingly enough, Narconon Eslov was located close to where I was Jiving in Sweden.
I want to give my personal tribute to Chick Corea for getting me on the way to a drug free life and to William Benitez for starting up the first Narconon Center. But most
of all, my work today as an event coordinator is dedicated to the living dream of total freedom for all mankind and to L. Ron Hubbard for helping me keep that dream alive ...
Doing this program in the 80's, it left me feeling as clean as I had before doing any drugs at all. This was a very big help to me, especially as an artist. I saw that drugs bring artists to a point where their creativity does not do any good for others, which I think is the greater purpose of art.
Lazze X Eventhen Sweden Graduate •
Fortunately, in the late 70's, I attended a Chick Corea concert in Sweden. While listening to one of his songs, I noticed that it was dedicated to "Narconon," I
Ifi .. r.st. s.tarted. uS.ing drUgs. whe. n I was 14 years old. It was a long
journey to Narconon 19 years later!
I was smart enough to stop using both times I was pregnant. But after each baby, I always went back to drugs. Why? Because I stopped for the babies, not for me. I wou ld stop periodically throughout the years what with being a parent and a good little worker bee, but I never stopped for good.
Addict in the Workplace Throughout those 19 years, I always worked. I moved up the corporate ladder; I owned a home; I was raising two beautiful children; I bad never been arrested. How could I be an addict? Well, I was! Alcohol, pot,
hash, opium, acid, rneth, cocaineany and all! I could not shake the grip of addiction. In '941 stopped using drugs, but then I just started drinking more and more, which was actually even worse. I felt like I was folding in on myself, shaking, crying all the time, hating everything about my life and tbe people in it. I thought my girls would be better off without me. I always put on a strong, well adjusted exterior, but I would call suicide hotlines in the middle of the night.
I called conventional treatment centers and attended out-patient meetings, but that was useless. I just didn't understand how something I had done to myself could be called
a disease. I could not come to admit to being powerless over anything. I
thought, this is it. . .I'm done ... my life is over. I can't live my life hiding from society in basement meetings where people think that relapse is okay. If you're "recovering," aren't you still using? If you're an addict, doesn't that mean you're still using?
I Had Given Up
r had finally given up all hope of getting better and was truly ready to die. My last day as an addict,
I was blacking out while driving home from a bar at 4 a.m, I was so drunk I was hanging my head out the window of my car while I was trying to drive and see at the same time. I found myself staring at this little railroad bridge near my home and thinking, "If I hit it, this will all be over."
Then I saw these flashing red lights. I was so drunk, but through that haze in my mind I thought, "It's all going to be okay. It's
over! Somebody's here to make this stop." I think fate sent me
that police officer to stop me from killing myself that night. 20 more seconds and I would have smashed into that railroad bridge wall. I never want to forget my instant reaction to being pulled over-s-relief It was a sign that it was time to get some real help. My husband said, "Lisa, just do what you have to do to bring me back my wife. I miss my wife."
We contacted my parents the day after the arrest and I told them everything. My parents had gone through my teens with my addiction, but they had no idea that it had continued for so long. I never saw my father cry until that day. He was sitting on the floor literally rocking me and put my face
in his hands and said, "Just don't die. I am not supposed to bury my child." He told me he agreed with me that addiction is not a disease-that it is self-induced from bad decision making. He and my mom called my younger brother and his wife who fortunately knew about the Narconon program.
Re~Starting My Life
When I first got to the center, I was so out of that it took me a week to notice there were huge wall-sized fireplaces on each floor of the 3-story facility! Once I came out of withdraw, I was so scared-
" ... I see my greatest success every day when I look into the faces of my family."
scared about having walked away from my life. But after a few days of doing the communication exercises, I began to realize that I had just started my life. I wanted this so bad!
The sauna sweatout program
was awesome! I felt all kinds of drugs come out of my body. 1 was especially amazed when I smelled and saw the diesel fuel and chemicals from my place of employment come out.
Okay! Now on to tbe rest of the program and all those courses. I could read; I could understand and apply the data. It was wonderful to get all tbose life skills.
A Better Wife,
Mother and Employee
I returned home and went back to work at the same company. I am now a better wife, mother, employee, person, etc. I have been able to get the Narconon program added to our list of treatment options. I am a contact for our employees interested in the Narconon programs and have also pitched it to our affiliates, e.g. customers and vendors, as an option for their employees.
One of my great successes is one of my friends, Frank. After I got back, we were able to get him to a Narconon center. He now works for this center, has gotten married and has a beautiful child. Awesome!
However, I see my greatest success every day when I look into the faces of my family. My husband, Vince, is now drug-free and amazing. But it's my children that are just the best. Emily, now 16, and Tricia, now 23, are the best young women a parent could ever dream of. They are both drug-free, confident, happy, and succeed at anything they put their intentions to!
A Living Testament 10 Years Later
My company has over 40,000 employees worldwide. Obviously, I'm not the only one who had a problem with drugs. I have become a very vocal part of our work culture in Safety and Human Resources meetings. It was fun teaching
tbe communication exercises to
my fellow workers. I work for
the world's largest transportation corporation, and I am glad I can playa part in helping to keep the roads safe.
I want to thank Narconon, my family and my company for my wonderful new life. I am here today, after 10 years as a drug-free productive person, thrilled to be
a living testament to tbe power and effectiveness of the Narconon program.
Lisa Arcaini Graduate, 1996
When I was 12, .my fr. iend and I started to smoke ciga-
rettes and pot. I was very clever and sneaky and bid it well. I got involved with a new crowd when
I was 18 and they were into meth. I thought I would never touch the stuff, but I tried it and loved it. I couldn't stay away from it.
The next 6 years were hell. I lived
in my truck or wherever I could. I wanted to quit the meth. I cried and felt really horrible, but not even
"I now have m.y life back and am living the life
1 have always wanted!"
my mother's tears or the fear in my children's eyes could get me to quit until, early one morning, I called my mother in a frantic rage and begged for help. The next thing I knew I was on an airplane headed for a Narconon center.
ceed in life and to overcome obstacles. I found my willpower and desire to continue improving life for me and
my family. In fact, I was able to apply what I learned during the program to quit smoking-a big win!
At first I wanted to leave, but the counselors helped me through the rougb spots and I finally began working hard on changing my life.
In the last three years since doing the Narconon program, my wife and I had a new little baby boy-our third child. My salary has doubled, allowing me to buy both a new vehicle and a new home. I now have my life back and am living the life I have always wanted! Thank you, Narconon.!
What did Narconon do for me? It saved my life. When I went to Narcanon, I literally had nothing. My wife and children had left me and I had nowhere to live. I learned to sue-
Anthony Noble Graduate,2004 •
I was a drug addict for twelve
y. ears. ~t .was a desperate period of my life that fortunately came to an end when I completed the Narconon program at one of their centers in Italy. It was a fantastic expenence,
It has now been nine years since I graduated the program. That accomplishment has made me feel stronger, more honest and open toward others. I can now set targets and reach them. But the most important thing I gained is self confidence and the trust of my family and my colleagues. At one time, I never thought I could recover these values.
Now I have my own family-sa beautiful wife and child-sa treasure that I'm very proud of.
I very much want other people who are suffering from drug or alcohol abuse to have the opportunity I had to do the Narconon program and become a productive member of society.
Raffaele Esposito Italy Graduate 1999
"It has now been nine years since 1 graduated the program."
"I've been permanently free from drugs for ten years now, .. "
Hello. My name is Kenny and I'm 42 years old. I completed the Narconon rehabilitation program
in Los Angeles in 1994. I'm writing a success story because 1 want drug addicts to know that the Narconon program IS the solution and that
you can be permanently free from drugs for the rest of your life. I know because I am.
Using at Age 12
I was beavily addicted to drugs. I had my first alcoholic drink when I was about 12 years old. I used and abused drugs such as alcohol, marijuana, hash, methamphetamines and cocaine. Because of the drugs, I even threw away a promising career as a professional baseball player. Eventually I ended up 011 the streets. I tried
drug rehab centers, lived in halfway houses, and participated in thousands of meetings. Nothing worked.
I was told I bad a disease. I never bad any disease! I was told I needed to "cope." "Coping" only bides problems temporarily. Misery and drug abuse inevitably follow.
No More Cravings
I was told everyone has drug cravings. Well, as part of the Narconon program, I sweated drugs and toxins out of my body. As a result, I never have drug cravings anymore.
I was told I used drugs because "you didn't really want sobriety" and "you haven't hit your bottom yet." Well, that bottom is death.
I'm thankful to myself for never giving up hope of finding a solution. I'm thankful to my parents for never giving up on me and finding Narconon.
I've been permanently free from drugs for ten years now, and I'm 100% in control of my life. I learned vital tools that I use everyday to live my life. I'm alive, productive, and happy now-valse very happily married.
I'm thankful to the Narconon staff for being there for me and help-
ing me. And I'm most thankful to William Benitez for establishing the organization and L. Ron Hubbard for providing tile methodology, and for saving Iives=especially mine!
~~ Kenny Zaucha •
EFFECTIVE DRUG REHABILITATION
A Drug-Free Life ;s Possible
Thousands of Narconon graduates now Live happy, productive and drug-free lives. Although the road to full recovery is not always an easy route, there is a road out with the Narconon program. The words from our graduates illustrate that tbis journey is well worth the effort and, once traveled, the rewards exceed anything they thought possible.
a person ceases to use abilities essential to constructive survival."
The Narconon Program
T.he Narconon program was founded in 1966 by William Benitez, at the time a heroin-addicted inmate of Arizona State Prison.
Having tried all existing methods to escape his addiction, he continued to search for a way out. In the prison library he came across a book written by L Ron Hubbard, The Fundamentals of Thought, which outlined an entirely new approach toward solving the problems of life.
"What impressed me the most about Mr. Hubbard's works," Benitez later wrote, "was that they concentrated not only on identifying abilities, but also on methods (practical exercises) by which to develop them. I realized that drug addiction was nothing more than a 'disability' that begins when
There are now over
120 Narconon drug rehabilitation and drug prevention centers in over 44 countries worldwide.
our success is the drug rehabilitation methods and life skills training developed by author and humanitarian
L. Ron Hubbard. This methodology has been used successfully by hundreds of thousands of people around the world to rid themselves of the need for drugs and to regain control of their lives.
Drug-Free Program The Narconon drug rehabilitation program is an. entirely drug-free program. The key to
From these works, with significant help from volunteers and with further research discoveries from Mr. Hubbard, Benitez developed a new, effective program. He named it "Narconon" meaning "nodrugs."
Benitez credited this program with saving his life and the lives of his fellow inmates wbo participated in the initial pilot. Benitez even turned down an early parole, as he did not want to leave the prison until the pilot was successfully completed. His intention was clear. He knew that he had discovered something revolutionary, something effective against drug addiction, and he wanted to make sure that it was made available to others in need.
For more information visit www.narconon.org 323.962.2404
A student who bas graduated from the Narconon program has recovered. He or she has obtained a new orientation
Our graduates demonstrate that a former addict can achieve a new, stably drug-free, ethical, and productive life,
For more information visit www.narconon.org 323.962.2404
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