After 17 years of living dangerously in addiction, Marion resident John Humphries transformed his life and has become a wise voice of testimony to inform and inspire youth, and help addicts find recovery.
Humphries was born and raised in Marion and attended Marion High School. He began using drugs for fun and to try to fit in, but became led by a growing addiction which led him away from graduation. Later in life, it caused him to separate from his two daughters. Stealing also became an addiction stemming from substance abuse. He wandered from town to town, worked at various restaurants, and at times slept in his car.
“I grew tired of myself,” Humphries said. “I didn’t believe in God. But, one day, after having heard many times about Jesus, I said, ‘Jesus Christ, if you’re real, I want to believe, but I don’t. I’ve tried everything. If you’re real, I need you now.’” Those words were an ultimatum on April 24th, 2012. “It was either accepting God, or probably death.”
Since that life-altering day, Humphries is unapologetically vocal about his past and purpose. He regained custody of his daughters, and began a career as a community health worker and peer support specialist for Bridges to Health. Humphries also recently co-created a partnership, “Cody and John Speak.” Cody Knuckles, also a recovering addict, and Humphries travel to schools, churches, jails and more to spread awareness of the power each decision has on one’s life. They tell of the dangers of fentanyl and other drugs today, and to hopefully change the path of troubled youth through public sessions and one-on-one conversations.
“If I’d been a teen today, I wouldn’t be alive,” said Humphries. He recalled a room of a few hundred middle school students where 80% raised hands when asked if they knew someone who had overdosed. “They just need to be told they have a purpose. It doesn’t need to be complicated. Write music. Take care of animals. Large or small, the world needs it. Protect it. It means you might not have certain friends.” He added, “We just need to build each other up.”
He named some places of nonjudgement where all are welcome: Disciples of Christ, Hope House, Grant County Rescue Mission, Grace House, Agape House, Core+ (765.231.2111), and an online program, “Bare Knuckle Recovery,” on Facebook. He encouraged visiting codyandjohn.com where stories and contact info may be found.