Dick Harmon: Max Hall incident both a reminder and wake-up call

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  • Albert Saint George, UT
    Sept. 5, 2014 8:24 a.m.

    @ There you go again- That statement makes perfect sense to those of us who are NOT addicts or alcoholics. To the person who is troubled and struggling with substance abuse, they cannot even comprehend that statement or wonder how it pertains to them.
    I have been struggling with a loved one and their addiction for many years now and nothing seems to be working. At some point the addict will make a choice to humble themselves and "try" the tools and suggestions that have been offered them during many, many, 12 step meetings, counseling sessions etc...
    We can sit back and critic their behavior all we want, but it just doesn't accomplish anything but frustration on our end. The best thing to do is practice the Christlike attributes we learn in church and see if we are capable of practicing what we preach to those who struggle. Sometimes that's all we can do.

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    Sept. 4, 2014 2:34 p.m.

    I'm not as much of a fan of Mr. Harmon's writing as some of the other comments. I wholeheartedly agree with the other comments of hoping & praying for the best for Max Hall. However, I'd like to provide a slight correction to the following statement in the article: "He has a wife and two children and a pair of loving parents who need this fixed." Max needs his addiction fixed for himself. His wife, children and both sets of parents will then reap the blessings.

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    Sept. 4, 2014 12:47 p.m.

    I got addicted to pain killers years ago. I quit and consequently, I live with my pain and have learned to basically ignore it. Bad back, bad knees, bad neck, bad ankles. The harshest pain killer that I take is Ibuprofen. I occasionally take Celebrex, but that isn't a pain killer, and I don't take it very much because I like my kidneys and liver just as they are.

    I hope Max gets the help he needs and de-toxes.\

  • daver Provo, 00
    Sept. 4, 2014 10:19 a.m.

    Au contraire, Malihini,my friend. I was just yesterday trying to recall the tender names of those dear ones from BYU's days past, whom I remember with gratitude for what they gave me in the way of inspiration for their talents, yet also recalling the enormous compassion I felt for their struggles and the prayers I offered (and still offer) as a former addict myself. Thank-you Dick.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    Sept. 4, 2014 9:59 a.m.

    One thing more about Trevor Mollini... He ended up in Utah State Prison because of his addictions. Nice kid, but got hooked up on pain killers...

    I am really proud that both Ute and Cougar fans have taken the high road on Max Hall, Although the rivalry gets a bit heated at times, it nice to see that the good hearts of the fans comes out when a players struggles with addiction.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 4, 2014 9:19 a.m.

    Dick Harmon gets it and lays it out perfectly...what more needs to be said, other than life can get tricky for some. We apply our own experiences and capabilities in our judgment of other people whose experiences and capabilities differ from our own. Rob Morris just shared of his addiction yesterday in social media. People with chronic pain face a difficult decision: live with pain everyday or risk the dependency on narcotic pain meds. It's a choice I would not want to face but have tremendous amount of empathy for those who do.

  • Malihini Northern, UT
    Sept. 4, 2014 9:09 a.m.

    The sentiment and point of this article is well received. Addiction at any level is brutal, affects all of us, and is something that we all hope and pray can be controlled by those that suffer. However, I wonder if it is really necessary for Harmon to dig up the stories of those who have suffered? I mean, we don't need names.

    I don't think we should ignore any of these instances or pretend they didn't happen, on the contrary we should acknowledge this near epidemic and always look for ways to support and provide healing for those affected, but I don't think it is necessary to recall by name those who have fought (and is some cases, continue to fight) this battle.

    We're praying for you, and others like you, Max.

  • payara OREM, UT
    Sept. 4, 2014 7:47 a.m.

    Thank you,thank you. Mr Harmon....you are the jewel of sports writing, always knowing what to say and always well researched.

    As a parent of a addicted son, we have lost so much and yet we have hope. Pray for Max and his family

  • J Poll Gilford, NH
    Sept. 4, 2014 6:15 a.m.

    Well said.

  • J Poll Gilford, NH
    Sept. 4, 2014 5:47 a.m.

    A local paper publishing a story about Hall being the most hated sports figure in Utah was unnecessary. I love rivalries but they usually go too far and some in radio & print media (names withheld), ramp it up in self indulging fashion. Even if written or spoken "objectively" and analytically, it fuels the seedy side of a rivalry.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Sept. 3, 2014 10:46 p.m.

    I've been a College Professor for over a quarter of century and have seen too many of my students go through this. Its an insidious disease that doesn't care who your parents are, how talented you are, or where you go to church. Sometimes it takes more than a "wake up call" for someone to seek help. It takes hitting Rock Bottom.

    I've referred kids to rehab and even taken them there myself. I can't make them go inside though. That has to come from within. That's the most frustrating part. Whatever you might think of Max, for his sake, and the sake of his family, let's hope he's got it within himself to get sober. Rock Bottom can get considerably worse than this. I've seen it too many times.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    Sept. 3, 2014 10:22 p.m.

    Substance abuse affects people everywhere and back. My hope is that we can look around us and recognize where we can give aid or exercise compassion. Sometimes certain individuals need a figure (in this case Max hall) that wakes them up. But make no mistake, others need support and people rooting for them the same way athletes, celebrities and rock stars do. The common Joe is often forgotten. Being a star athlete has a downside as well, I get that. I mean Hall is all over the news. But in a way that can help him overcome his demons. He can't deny his problems as easy perhaps now. His comments 5 years ago have come full circle. He has many in our community rooting for him. And if he is victorious in this battle, he can do a circuit of speech engagements and firesides that will really benefit others and heal himself. It's a way he can get back into the rhythm of life when employment might be hard to come by in the near future.

  • Tuffy Parker Salem, UT
    Sept. 3, 2014 8:44 p.m.

    Not to minimize the tragedy of drug dependence and abuse, but several articles over the past couple of days seem to insinuate that this problem is unique to BYU. Unfortunately it is not.

    Athletes of many stripes have become addicted to pain meds after dealing with sports related injuries. Others get hooked on drugs as a by-product of dealing with fame, fortune and the loss thereof. It certainly happens with BYU athletes but most certainly the Cougars do not have the corner on the market.

    Hoping the best for Max Hall and his family.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Sept. 3, 2014 7:32 p.m.

    An Apostle who played at Utah and was a UTE fan said the following...

    “While traveling along a mountainous road one evening through a driving rainstorm punctuated with frequent claps of thunder and flashes of lightning, Sister Wirthlin and I could barely see the road, either in front of us or to the right and the left. I watched the white lines on that road more intently than ever before. Staying within the lines kept us from going onto the shoulder and into the deep canyon on the one side and helped avoid a head-on collision on the other. To wander over either line could have been very dangerous. I thought, ‘Would a right-thinking person deviate to the left or the right of a traffic lane if he knew the result would be fatal? If he valued his mortal life, certainly he would stay between these lines.’

    “If we stay within the lines that God has marked, he will protect us, and we can arrive safely at our destination” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1990, 80; or Ensign, Nov. 1990, 64).

    A true reminder and a wake-up call for all of us.