I don't talk about it often, but I feel very keenly that drug addiction is a sickness. It's an illness that steals your personality and brain and leaves a horrible, evil shell; your face and body with a ravaged, diseased mind, incapable of thinking rationally. The drugs do this. My brother died of a heroin overdose. It was a sickness he struggled with and fought for years. I watched it turn him from an amiable, talented boy into a vicious, sometimes violent thief; he tried to be the man he should have turned out to be, and almost made it a few times. Then the drugs came back, and one day it was too much when he wasn't prepared for it, and he was just dead, at the age of 27.
What the drugs did to my relationship with my brother, and that they stole him from me, is one of my greatest regrets in life. We never really got to know each other as adults because the drug use was always in the way. Even into his twenties he acted like an angry teenager. He spent a lot of time in juvenile facilities and half-way houses, instead of being treated for drug addiction.
So I always feel it keenly when it happens again, to anyone. If she'd died of cancer or heart disease, there wouldn't be jokes.