SHERWOOD, Ohio (WANE) — Most people who battle addiction will say it started with smoking and drinking in their teens.
Darrel Egnor and Jeffrey Beam both started their journeys that way. They both would go on to become drug addicts and end up in jail at least once.
“It was like I had everything and then gave it all up,” Beam said. “I gave everything away, including my kids, for the drugs.”
Beam and Egnor both said they eventually found their way to a life of sobriety and they both did it through faith.
Their faith led them to Xperience Church in Defiance, Ohio. That’s where they met and immediately hit it off.
Egnor presented Beam with an idea: to record a podcast.
“I was like, what’s the worst that’s going to happen? You know, we’re going to have some fun, we’re going to joke around, we’re going to record it, it’s going to be on the internet. If that’s the worst thing people hear about me on the internet, that I’m talking about getting sober and we’re talking about Jesus, and we make a couple of jokes, you know, great,” Beam said.
That was the birth of the Resurrection Recovery podcast.
Egnor told WANE 15 it grew rapidly with more than 1,000 listeners waiting for episodes to drop on Wednesday nights.
“We’re raw. We’re real. We’re going to tell you what you need to hear. We’re not going to sugarcoat anything,” Egnor said.
But it also comes with a lot of jokes. You’d never know that just a few years ago, the two men thought they might die from drugs.
The response, they said, was overwhelming. Beam said that they continuously heard from listeners. What he found to be interesting: it wasn’t just people battling addiction. Folks facing life’s regular struggles were also tuning in.
“When we started impacting lives like that, and we had people reaching out saying ‘ Thank you. Thank you. Keep going. Keep doing it. You don’t know what this means to me,’ it sat on my heart, and I was like this is something that we have to do,” Beam said.
Egnor and Beam now see helping others as their life’s calling.
Beam is pursuing a career in counseling and has already received an associate’s degree. Egnor said he’s considering going back to school as well.
While they’re helping others, they’ve found that it’s also helping them continue to try and be the best they can be.
It has also brought them both closer to their families. For Beam, that even meant a relationship with his daughter who he hadn’t spoken to in seven years.
According to Beam, his daughter Sarah’s mom played the podcast for her. After that, she contacted her dad.
“That’s God,” Beam said. “It was God because it wasn’t anything I did. I mean I had reached out a couple of times, but pretty much in the last eight months I had just kind of, not really given up on the idea, but I had given it over to God.”
Recently, Beam brought Sarah onto Resurrection Recovery where she asked him any questions she wanted to ask.
“It was awesome, you know just doing like a Q&A where she got to ask me anything, you know? Take the gloves off. I want you to ask me the dirty questions. The ones that you don’t, you know, the ones that you are scared to ask me. I want you to ask me those things. It was good,” Beam said. “Because if I can get gut-honest and vulnerable with people I’ve never met, how could I not get gut honest with somebody who’s a part of me, somebody, who taught me what love was, you know? I had to do it. I just had to.”
Egnor and Beam want to continue to spread awareness, help people, and try to put an end to the stigma that surrounds drug addiction.
“It don’t matter who you are. It’ll get you. I don’t care, Egnor said. “If you’re raised in a preacher’s family, if you’re raised in a doctor’s family, it doesn’t matter. It can grab a hold of somebody. I guarantee almost everybody out there watching right now knows somebody that’s dealing with addiction. And, so what we need to do as humans is open your heart and realize that they’re still humans, that they now have a disease. Once we can cure that, man, we can change the world.”
If you or someone you love has a story you’d like to share for our Active Recovery series, please email us at email@example.com.
A special message from Darrel Egnor and Jeffrey Beam: