MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- It is a loaded gun and comedian and actor Gary Owen has set his sights on keeping all of those bullets in the chamber.
"I wanted to tell kids, I wanted to get to them before the dealer gets to them," Said Owens.
He's in town for the “Laughs for Le Bonheour” fundraiser but made time to share a story that is far from funny. In fact, it exposes the real and raw truth about addiction.
"My brother overdosed May 20th, 2015 of a heroin overdose and I didn't know he was doing heroin," Owens shared.
Owen says the revelation hit him like a ton of bricks, a wake-up call that he will never forget.
"He goes 'I can't stop myself from using' and he was about to stick a needle in his arm and he goes 'I don't know what to do.' He goes 'I literally cannot stop myself'," recalling his brother's words to him.
At the time Owen didn't quite understand his brother's struggle but heard his cry for help loud and clear.
"My brother calls out of left field crying on the phone the phone goes dead his girlfriend picks up and says he just shot up and I could hear him moaning in the background"
While Owen wasn't able to save his brother despite taking him to rehab, he hopes sharing his story can prevent someone else from venturing down that dark path.
Turning Point interim CEO Vinnie Strumolo says speaking out is the only way to turn the epidemic around.
"The only way I think is through education to reach the population on the severe problem and the explosion of the opioid addiction," shared Strumolo.
If you or someone you know needs help fighting opioid addiction Turning Point can help.
Tickets for "Laughs for Le Bonheour" are still available. You can get yours here.