Police say he was one of the most dangerous criminals in southeastern Kentucky, but now he is a Christian fighting the war against drugs.
Steve Collett from Manchester is rallying other communities to battle addiction.
He spoke at the UNITE Pike meeting on Tuesday.
Collett says if he can beat drug addiction, anyone can. However, he says churches and faith based organizations need to step up in the fight against drugs.
Collett, whose life is featured in the documentary, "An Appalachian Dawn," is a former cocaine and meth addict who turned his life around and is now a Christian.
"I was the most miserable human being in the world because I was the biggest drug addict in the world. It's not like that today. My worst day as a Christian was better than my best day as a sinner," Collett said.
It is a message the man from Clay County is spreading worldwide.
"I choose to give back to the children and teens and steer them from the road I went down," said Collett.
Speaking to the UNITE Pike club, Collett said churches need to be involved in the war against drugs.
'If we don't do something, we are losing the next generation," he said.
"He gave us a challenge. We in our community and particularly our faith community need to step up in Pike County and do a better job reaching out to people who have an addiction," said Jarrod Hunt, UNITE Pike Executive Director.
"It takes people, after listening to people like him, to do things and get things done," said Pike County Sheriff's Deputy Melvin Sayers.
Collett credits his church helping him after years of drug abuse. He also referenced the prayers and events that led to Manchester being known as the "City of Hope."
"What happened in Manchester was not the darkness but lack of light in the street. We just got to come to unity if we plan on anything happening in our communities," Collett said.
He says his life is an example of what can happen when faith is involved.
Collett says he will share his story with youth groups or other organizations. Anyone interested can contact UNITE Pike at 606-433-9329.