Founding Fentanyl Fathers Sandy, Tom, Jamie, Bob, Kimberlee & Greg all lost their child. They lived to tell about it; now they LIVE to tell about it!

Fentanyl Fathers consists entirely of highly motivated bereaved parents with two exceptions: Fentanyl Fathers follows the science with doctor and grant writer Jack Swan on staff. Fentanyl Fathers works with Congress through member Bob Carey who runs The National Defense Foundation in Washington DC.

The Fentanyl Fathers Story

10 Years ago on April 3, 2013 Gregory Swan lost his first born son Drew to the Opioid Epidemic. Drew was 7 days shy of his 25th birthday. Drew’s only brother Jack was absolutely broken but channeled his grief into becoming a Doctor to help other “Drews”. But our family felt utterly destroyed. Many parents never come back from such a loss and the elder Swan barely did. EMDR therapy began his road to recovery.

In 2018, solely for the purpose of raising awareness for the Opioid crisis, Swan convinced his wife Kristine to run for U.S. Congress. He reasoned her famous father (Anchorman Bill Bonds, 19 Emmys) would earn them media attention and attract Washington’s support. An article in the Detroit News captured the attention of the Speaker of the House’s team (then Paul Ryan) and we accepted an invitation to DC to be “vetted.” But “The customer rarely buys what the business thinks it sells him.” We came with an agenda, sorrow, and media leverage. Speaker Pelosi is said to have had a policy of “No bereaved parents get near my door.” We get that. We can be unfairly persuasive.

In the course of the meeting, we blamed Ryan’s team for the deaths of 35,000 Americans in the previous six months ever since their failure to pass the American Health Care Act. (It had a sizable budget to fight the opioid epidemic.) To their credit, they all heartily agreed with us that “doing nothing was completely unacceptable”. In response, the following week they convinced the President to alter the State of the Union Address from “Defense spending only” to add the inclusion of an appeal for America to fight this awful scourge wrecking families and communities. It worked, sort of. The Congressman who held Michigan’s 11th District seat before our run – Kerry Bentivolio – called us when we got back from DC and said “What the He*l did you do in Washington? Now every single member of Congress suddenly needs to bone up on Opioids because they have been promised the media will ask about it after the SOTU next week!”

Kerry Bentivolio sitting to right of Kristine Bonds during their first debate.

True to Kerry’s prediction, the President pitched it and $6 billion was appropriated. Deaths went down considerably that year according to the CDC. UNFORTUNATELY, the money was mostly blown on PSAs. The effect and impact was only nominal. We funded one ourself with our famous adopted mother – Dr. Alveda King. It was called “The Opioid Oath”. Without media budget however, it got little play. The $6 billion worth of spots that did run seemed cheesy, preachy, and desperate sounding. We instinctively knew bereaved parents did not make them and that Madison Avenue obviously did not understand the issue.


2021 and 2022 became successive record years for overdose deaths. There is no precedent to even hyperbolically describe how bad it’s become. Here’s some Fentanyl Math* comparing death toll number facts: Take all of last year’s childhood cancer deaths and drunk driving deaths, add all Covid Pandemic deaths ever under age 30, all deaths total in Vietnam9/11, and all deaths total on every airline crash WORLD WIDE since 2006, and you still come up 14,344 deaths short compared to how many Americans fatally overdosed just last year: 110,236 died in 2022 according to the CDC – another record high! Most of them quite young, and the vast majority from Fentanyl.

What is going on here? Supply wise, China, backed by their government (watch from the 15:48 to 17:38 time mark) makes the raw materials and sells them to Mexico’s Cartels, who pipe Fentanyl into the USA. BUT FIRST, Mexico makes Fentanyl into counterfeit (fake) Adderall, Xanax, Percocet, Vicodin & Oxycontin. Even street marijuana and vapes get mixed with Fentanyl. Kids who typically can’t get a legitimate script resort to ordering their “pills of choice” on Snapchat and other platforms. The pills are delivered directly to their unaware parent’s homes. 6 in 10 pills are stuffed with a fatal dose of Fentanyl. This repeated act is literally slaughtering America’s youth.

One such death on October 26th of 2021 was Bruce Snodgrass, a beautiful 22 year old Alaskan. He told his mom Sandy he “was going for a bike ride” and she never saw him alive again. But Sandy fought back. Sandy fought so hard, she ended up winning big. Sandy Snodgrass convinced four powerful bi-partisan United States Senators – 2 Democrats (Hassan & Feinstein) and 2 Republicans (Murkowski & Sullivan) – to get together and introduce “Bruce’s Law” in honor of her son. Bruce’s Law’s primary purpose is for Fentanyl Awareness Education. At the same time, other bereaved parents were fighting back.

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski announcing Bruce’s Law

In California, bereaved dad of Danny -Jaime Puerta- started VOID and created an award winning, compelling film to show to school age kids. Their response has been overwhelming. “We had no idea” they ALL say! In Oregon, bereaved mom of Cal -Jennifer Epstein- joined Song For Charlie as her path forward. She helps “Song” create compelling materials for bereaved parents to also present to High Schools. Others continue to pop up, making a difference in their “neck of the woods”. On January 31, 2023, Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) hosted a big tech roundtable on Fentanyl. BUT…

Ads FAIL. Assemblies WORK!

America’s outcry has reached an apex. EVERYONE agrees with this statement: “All High Schoolers need to be warned about Fentanyl.” And yet NO ONE has taken responsibility for making that happen – ubiquitously, comprehensively, at scale, in all 25,077 High Schools in the USA. Even Meta (Facebook) has partnered with The Ad Council to create a controversial media campaign called “Drop the F* Bomb“. Ads alone failed during our $6 Billion “test” as documented above. When placed the ads should be strategic – using location technology – such as GODclick.com provides Catholic High Schools drawing a polygon around the High School and capturing the IMEI #s (or MAIDs – Mobile Ad IDs) of every student, teacher and parent in the building. We’ve seen this movie before and already proved it doesn’t work. Preachy media fails. Even the DEA has a “Faces of Fentanyl” museum and a designated “Fentanyl Awareness Day”. Do you know where it is or when it is? Neither do High Schoolers. We must GO TO THEM. When an Angel parent shows up in a school, kids put down their cell phones and pay attention. Sad Dads aren’t acting and kids know it. Our :45 minute presentation of DOA, a LIVE bereaved parent, & FACTS results in students declaring with us: “I’ll never try so I’ll never die from Fentanyl”. After that- they’ll drink gasoline before they mess with fentanyl poison disguised as a prescribed pill. They’ll KNOW 3 in 5 pills KILL.

Fentanyl Fathers is Born

ONLY a LIVE, High School Assembly presentation combining the best of VOIDSong For Charlie, & Bruce’s Law along with a concluding declaration to each other stating “I’ll never try so I’ll never die from Fentanyl” has proven 100% effective in waking kids up that this is truly life or death. Russian Roulette’s odds of dying are 1 in 6. With Fentanyl, it’s 3 in 5. Outrageous!

The challenge: How do we cover America’s 25,077 High Schools as soon as possible in 2023? Other than the appropriate budget which this emergency commands, where do we find willing presenters? Wa-la: The bereaved parents of Fentanyl victims are willing and able! WE are the ones who care the most. WE are the ones who won’t give up. WE are the ones who want our child’s death to NOT be in vain – if only we can save another kid, parents, and family the same fate as we have endured. In 2022, over 220,000 parents had their child ripped from their lives. The biggest and best help for their grief is to save other kids! Yet some are reluctant. There is a perceived stigma attached to an accidental OD in their minds. But frankly, that ship has sailed. These kids are mostly murdered through false pretenses. This is a raging fire in America’s kitchen and we need to put it out IMMEDIATELY. After a Fentanyl Fathers presentation, kids will be more likely to drink gasoline than they are to go anywhere near an unprescribed pill.

Get MADD. Skip Church.

MADD.org changed the Landscape of Drunk Driving. They have an annual budget north of $40 million. That is why Fentanyl Fathers is under the direction of MADD.org’s former first man, Skip Church. Skip wrote “From a Dad’s Perspective.” Mr. Church is married to MADD’s former President Colleen Sheehey-Church. Here’s the “rub”. MADD oversees an average of 10,000 annual deaths. Fentanyl kills 11 TIMES that many – yet there is NO ONE taking national responsibility to sound the alarm like Paul Revere to our High Schoolers. UNTIL NOWThis is why Fentanyl Fathers exists – to get THAT done. Our simple 2023 mission is to get inside all USA High Schools and deliver our LIFE SAVING message based on facts, experience, and award winning films. We’ve culled together the best material available and we’ll upgrade as new content emerges. Plus, we will deliver FREE Naloxone (which aborts an OD in progress) after each assembly. Emergent’s NARCAN has shown great interest in helping us with that.

Mandate or Scholarship?

San Diego County has lead the nation in being the first to mandate Fentanyl Awareness Education. High Schools are resistant to assemblies – unless they already lost a kid. This should not be and we need help making High Schools an offer they can’t refuse. If not mandated, we suggest a $1,000 scholarship to every school that opens their doors to us in honor of the name of the child of each presenting bereaved parent.

We’re a 501c3 initiative of The National Defense Foundation with one purpose, one spirit. We are Fentanyl’s MADD.org. We intend to put the stink on Fentanyl directly to the would be victims. Fentanyl awareness is the new URGENT. We have an unprecedented opportunity in American history to save parents the unbearable burden of losing their child. May we succeed at God Speed! Who’s with us? Let’s go to work. | FentanylFathers.org

National Defense Foundation 501c3 | 248 667 2722
Co-Founders: Sandy.Snodgrass@FentanylFathers.org | Bob.Minotti@FentanylFathers.org | JackSwan@FentanylFathers.org | Bob.Carey@FentanyFathers.org | James.McCarthy@FentanylFathers.org | Greg@FentanylFathers.org
*FentanylFathers.org Math: 2022 Drunk Driving Deaths: 10,360 | 9/11/01 deaths: 2,977 | Young Covid deaths since 2019: | 18-29: 6749 | 0-17: 1,414 | Childhood Cancer 2022: 1,050 children (0 -14) | 550 (15-19) | Vietnam (ALL): 58,220 | Plane Crashes since 2006 world wide fatalities: 14,572
10,360 + 2,977 + 6749 + 1414 + 1,050 + 550 + 58,220 + 14,572 = 95,892. | ODs last year (CDC): 110,236. | 110,236 (ODs last year) minus ( – ) all above deaths combined totaling 95,892 = 14,344 | That’s 14,344 MORE (mostly young, mostly from Fentanyl) Americans died last year from FENTANYL than Covid, Childhood Cancer, Vietnam, 9/11, Drunk Driving and plane crashes COMBINED.