Woman dies from toxic drug despite mom’s desperate bid to save her
After 10 years of desperate attempts to help her drug-addicted daughter, a distraught mother – who made a heartfelt, but futile plea to a Port Elizabeth magistrate last year to put her daughter in jail to keep her safe – has had to watch her die.
A tragic victim of the deadly krokodil drug which is being sold increasingly on the street, Bonita Dean, 25, was only able to communicate by moving her hand in the days leading up to her death at Livingstone Hospital.
Covered in sores and critically ill, she finally succumbed to her addiction on Wednesday last week.
“It was like watching someone drown over several years,” her mother, Martha, 64, said.
Shortly before Dean died of complications from her addiction, she told a friend who tried to help her: “I never thought that dying would be this terrible.”
The highly toxic substance known on the streets as krokodil is a cheap substitute for heroin – the base is crushed codeine tablets which are mixed with anything from petrol to hydrochloric acid and lighter fluid.
International estimates are that addicts seldom survive more than two years of continuous use.
They often develop gangrenous sores on their arms and legs and die of sepsis.
Martha said Dean had been addicted to a variety of drugs for the past 10 years and had eventually become addicted to heroin.