Mom who lost son to overdose buys billboard to raise awareness for Good Samaritan Law


MARIETTA, Ohio -- Lenora Lada's son Trey Moats was struggling with addiction. She knew it, and she felt helpless. "At 26 years old there's not a lot of options for a parent. Unless they want that help, there's nothing you can do," she said.

Her son was in a car with friends when his lips turned blue. They drove him to a friend's home where they say a mother knew CPR. But rather than call 911, they called Trey's mom to come and get him. "When I got to the house he was laying on the ground. He was gurgling," she said.

Lada says Trey had been at the home for 20 to 25 minutes before she arrived. "I said 'did we call 911? ' ' No. I don't want the squad coming to my house again,' is what the mother said. I turned to the daughter and screamed 'call them now' and she did."

But it would be too late. Trey died at the hospital. The coroner ruled his death as multiple organ failure due to cardiac arrest and polysubstance abuse.

Out of this tragedy, Lenora Lada wanted people to know her son's life mattered, so she did something big. Lada paid for a billboard to draw attention to Ohio's good Samaritan Law.

Under the law, the person who calls 911 to report an overdose can't be prosecuted. Neither can the person who overdosed. Immunity is only good for two times and not available for people on parole.

A medical professional can share with law enforcement the name and address of the person who overdosed for further investigation. The law also requires the person who overdosed to receive a referral treatment within 30-days of receiving medical help to receive immunity.

Lada says she'd like to see part of the law changed. "I am asking for people to be accountable for not getting them help," she says.

In the end, she believes those who failed to call 911, left her son to die. According to the sheriff's report, it's unclear if her son would have survived if he was taken to a hospital. One coroner said he would be brain dead; another said he's not sure.

There will be a candlelight vigil for Trey under the billboard on January 19th which would have been his 27th birthday.