News Flash


Posted on: April 26, 2023

Fighting the Opioid Crisis in Odessa

Fighting Drugs

Fighting DrugsA special check presentation took place at the Odessa City Council meeting Tuesday night, money that will be used to help fight the war on drugs in our city.

City Council Members Denise Swanner and Mark Matta spearheaded this effort.  It’s funding they applied for and were granted.  So far, the City of Odessa has received around $175,000 and a total of $600,000 will be given.  They are working with the Odessa Police Department on how to best utilize the money.
Also on hand, families who sadly lost loved ones to drugs.  They’re part of a nonprofit called “The 1:11 Project,” bringing awareness to fentanyl and general drug addiction awareness to West Texas.

Michelle Watson, the founder, lost her son to fentanyl.  He left behind a 1-year-old who is now 4.  To keep her son “alive,” she has to show him they’ll fight for other people to live.  She says every 11 seconds someone dies from fentanyl.  “If I can save one kids that’s all that matters to me.”

Mayor Javier Joven and the rest of our Odessa leaders expressed their sympathies.  They say they will do everything they can to help in this fight!
The 1:11 Project will hold a rally outside the Ector County Courthouse in an effort to raise awareness May 6th from 4 pm - 7 pm.

Also in attendance, other parents who lost their children to fentanyl poisoning.  They shared pictures of their loved ones and some important words. You can see the pictures on our FB page.

Rebecca Ochoa Connally says, “It means a lot to be able to get awareness out there, so that other families do not have to experience the loss of a child or loved one the way that we have.”  

Marie Rodriguez says, “Don’t Run, Call 911.” After finding out on Facebook that her son was gone.  She says kids need to understand that they can save a life, if they say something. Don’t just leave your friends to die.

Skyler Harrison says, “Even one child lost to Fentanyl is one too many.  We’ve got to fight back against Fentanyl by bringing prevention and awareness to this poison.”

Larry and Donna Johnson say, “We are so thankful for the money and attention the state and city council are giving to the fentanyl crisis. Also, thank you to Michelle Watson and the 1:11 project for all of their hard work. We don’t want another family to go through this. We made that promise to our boy.”

Tina Marie Larson says, “Please allow this message in our schools. This foundation. These Moms. I’m guessing every person who has shared 1:11 Project has lost someone very important to them or knows someone who has. Sharing these stories anywhere that can be, personally, I believe will help these children. Moms, Dads families all over the world are being crippled because of this epidemic. I personally, talked to Carter, MAD Talked , because I believed he might have been using pills, exactly one week to the day prior to losing him. Why? Maybe because ‘moms are just over protective and trying to spoil their “fun”. Coming from a group to our Children will hold a higher impact I believe. I 💯 believe.”

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