In three years, Jeanmarie McCauley has lost three children to drug addiction. “I’m numb,” the 51-year-old from Rockland, Massachusetts, told Us Weekly in a new interview. “The worst part is a few months down the road after all the services are over and reality starts to settle in. This part I can get through.”
The audibly shaken single mom tells Us her son Jesse passed away on November 6 in Delray Beach, Florida, after a four-year battle with opioids. “Jesse had finished treatment at a facility and was really proud of himself … but my guess is someone tempted him,” says McCauley. “Someone found his body on the beach at 9 o’clock in the morning.” Jesse was just 24 years old.
“This was my biggest fear, that he was going to go out to Florida and he was going to be by himself and die,” says the bookkeeper. “Right before he left, he asked, ‘What would you ever do if you lost me?’ and I said, ‘I don’t think I could handle losing my third son, I don’t know that I’d make it through that one.’”
McCauley’s eldest boy, Corey, died in October 2014 of a fentanyl heroin mix. Her youngest, Jordan, who suffered from mental illness, overdosed at age 20 in April 2013, on a combination of drugs including suboxone. “Corey was an all-star football player,” says McCauley. “He got injured and was prescribed pain medication. He quickly got addicted to the pain meds and within six months he was doing heroin because he couldn’t afford pain medication on the street. Too expensive.”
Jesse will be buried beside his brothers on what would have been his 25th birthday, Tuesday, November 14. “There is a huge heroin epidemic in Rockland,” says McCauley. “So many kids of the ’80s generation just being wiped out. And you get people who think it’s never going to happen to their child, and I can tell you this: I never thought I was going to bury three sons before their 26th birthday.”
More than 1,000 people died as a result of opioid-related overdoses in Massachusetts in 2014, according to a state report obtained by the Boston Globe. The number of such deaths was 33 percent higher than in 2012.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help with funeral expenses.