By Dalton's mom and dad, Lori and James
There will never be another Dalton Womack. His father and I refuse to let his story end.
Dalton was born September 20, 1991. Anyone who was lucky enough to meet Dalton will never forget him. He had a smile that was absolutely contagious - you couldn’t help but feel good when he was around and in good spirits. Dalton’s love for children was always present. He could relate to children like no one else; he cared about how they felt and also he cared for them in a way that they knew Dalton was a friend.
The respect Dalton gave to the elderly was admirable. He would go out of his way to open a door, walk someone to their car, or carry their groceries. It was his nature to help others. Dalton did whatever was needed without even blinking an eye - this is why it is so hard and his story should never end.
Dalton was a friend to anyone he would meet - in other words, he never met a stranger. Music was in his soul and he loved it more than anything (other than being with his friends and family). Dalton was a caring person and gave everything he could; on many occasions right down to his last dollar - he would go without it just to make sure someone else had what they needed. He lived his life unselfish and had a huge heart. Dalton had to be operated on when he was born to replace his heart - I told him the doctors made his heart out of gold and that only certain people had this treasure. Dalton would simply smile, shrug his shoulders, and say “I’m just lucky I guess.”
Before we knew it, Dalton was struggling with addiction. His addiction started off small and became more powerful; bigger than we could ever imagine. We had countless conversations but nothing seemed to help; therefore, we turned to treatment.
Being a mother, I never gave up hope - day after day, night after night, and 30 days later, I was ready to take on the new challenge of helping my son overcome his addiction, or so I thought. The death of several individuals, including Dalton’s best friend, was not enough to save him from his struggles with addiction.
Being Dalton’s mom, I was always able to fix it - whatever “it” might be. Whether it was good or bad, big or small, I could fix it. However, I could not fix his addiction. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t do it.
My worst fear came on July 8, 2016; the dreaded phone call that every mother hates but knows at some point might come. Dalton was gone. Not just out of town, not just going to the store and be back later, but gone. He died at the hands of a steering wheel, with addiction gripping him. He was by himself, all alone.
We received the news from the emergency room doctor and chaplain - the conversation still plays over and over in my head. The pain today still hurts as if it were yesterday and probably will forever. But one thing I know to be true, if Dalton and the many others could have the opportunity to look ahead and see how tragic life could end with addiction, maybe just maybe things would be different. Hell isn’t six feet under; Hell is loving and missing a son who had addiction.
His story will never end.