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Memphian creates stickers to raise awareness of heroin epidemic

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Headlines around the country are calling heroin usage unprecedented while videos of overdoses are so disturbing they're going viral on social media.

On Tuesday Memphis Police Director Mike Rallings said we have an epidemic.

However one Memphian who continues to see the pain firsthand is trying to do something.

"There's kinda a hush hush thing in the community and I'm tired of losing friends and most importantly I'm tired of seeing my friends lose their friends and family," said Brian McCabe, owner of the Hi Tone Cafe and Dirty Cotton.

McCabe is talking about heroin. The silent killer we've seen all too many times play out on social media. In October a video of a couple overdosing in Memphis went viral.

Rallings said the situation is dire.

"We can't ignore this. 122 Memphians overdosed in 2016. The Memphis Fire Department administered almost 1,700 doses of Narcan," he said.

McCabe is taking a stand. Tried of seeing countless lives destroyed, he created stickers in the shape of a stop sign that say, "STOP Doing Heroin"  to send a message.

"Some sort of campaign that's strong and powerful and in your face," he explained.

Monday night he announced on Facebook he was giving the stickers away. His post garnered more than 700 likes and hundreds of shares, followers shared their stories with him.

"I've gotta buddy in Florida that needs me to send him some. I've also got a buddy in California I'm sending some to today," he said.

WREG asked McCabe how much good will a sticker really do. He  said while the stickers are a material thing, he hopes they will start a conversation.

" I mean I think honestly if one person sees it and they decide to quit that day or even come talk to me about it and spend their time with me or anyone else maybe it will spark something in someone and if it can change one person then that'll be the greatest gift ever," he said.

The stickers are free. If you would like one you can pick them up at the Hi Tone Cafe on North Cleveland. They are open from 5 p.m. to 3 a.m.

McCabe also plans to create shirts with the message too.