Former Drug Addict Now Mentors Teens

By: Dara Rees Email
By: Dara Rees Email

Chris Espinoza spends his time volunteering at the Lord's Gym in Whitley City and staff members are seeing his positive influence throughout the community.

Chris Espinoza, known as Espo to his friends, says he started drinking in high school soon after his father died. "I started drinking, then I started smoking pot. Then I went from pot to the harder drugs where I was doing meth every day, doing cocaine every day."

After getting hooked and even selling drugs, Espinoza says it got to the point where the drugs could not make him happy anymore.

"A year ago I finally got to my breaking point. I just accepted god in my life and he's taken care of me ever since. I have no desire to do any of that stuff anymore," says Espinoza.

"That young man immediately stopped drugs. Lost a taste for it, now that's amazing," says Braxton King, the director of the Lord's Gym. He says Espinoza had an influence on others since he first walked through the doors.

"He's still an influence. He was then and he is now. But he's an influence now to help kids get out of the things that maybe he was influencing kids to get into previously," says King.

Espinoza now volunteers his free time, working with teens as a mentor and friend, and someone who has seen both sides of the tracks.

"I'm hoping that maybe some day maybe I can help somebody with the stuff that I've been through, and give them good advice on how to make it through tough things in life," says Espinoza.

King says he's seen a change in other teens at the gym since Espinoza turned his life around.

Chris Espinoza says he hopes to one day be able to work with teens full time, but says he will mentor people wherever he goes.


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  • by been Location: there done that on Dec 11, 2008 at 07:56 PM
    been there done that but I still dont trust myself to do that I could fall off a wagon any time Ive said wolf to many times no trust in any one no more just belive in god an pray ever day u wake up an be thankfull that u got today make the best of your decsion dont do drugs thats the facts
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 01:45 PM
    This was a great story. It shows that you can be looked up to and be a christan. Good Job Lord's Gym and God Bless
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 01:43 PM
    This story is another example that any one can make a difference.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 01:43 PM
    god bless! This story shows that people can over come and anything through God.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 01:42 PM
    Great story! I hope this story will help the youth realize its ok to be a christan.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 01:41 PM
    A true inspirational story for the youth.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 01:40 PM
    Glad to see a teen step up and be an example to the youth
  • by Anonymous on Dec 10, 2008 at 05:52 AM
    god bless you. teens these days have all the answers. it helps to hear from someone that has been through the same thing and knows where you are coming from..
  • by Terri on Dec 10, 2008 at 05:07 AM
    May God be with you, son. He is the only answer to our problems in this life. I'm happy for you and hope you can help others.

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