Dolores Borza stood in front of Cumberland Farms Wednesday to denounce drug dealers on Martha’s Vineyard, as well as to honor the recent passing of a close friend.
She held two signs, one reading “We love you Joey,” and another reading “‘Enough’ Stop the drug dealers!”
Both signs told separate but equally important stories — one of the tragic death of an Islander who was loved by many, and the other of an ongoing issue in our small community.
“It’s amazing how many people he impacted here,” Borza said. “He was so important to so many people, and right now it just doesn’t even seem real.”
Borza said that Joey was “incredibly talented,” and brought joy to his friends and family. “He could recite “Hamlet” and take an engine apart at the same time,” Borza said.
According to Borza, the young man was a skilled musician, and always loved to play his guitar.
Joey had a “heart of gold,” and Borza said he never had an unkind word for anybody. “He was 29, it’s a tragedy, and it needs to stop,” Borza said.
The Times is not providing his full name because his family has not released it.
Borza said she wants to bring awareness to the opioid epidemic on Martha’s Vineyard and put a stop to the senseless “murder” of Island youths. “Stop killing our kids,” Borza said as she held her signs for passersby to see.
Borza said she has a 30-year-old son, and is thankful that he wasn’t involved in drugs. “I can’t imagine what Joey’s family is going through,” Borza said.
According to Borza, people who sell opioids like heroin and prescription pain medications are “murderers,” and deserve to be treated accordingly in the eyes of the law. She said many drug dealers get a slap on the wrist when they are released on parole or receive light sentencing because of a first offense. “These people should be sent away,” Borza said. “The police need to do more.” She noted that additional security and police presence on ferries and at the steamship terminals would deter drug dealers. She said that the time has come for people to stand up to dealers. “Don’t be ashamed or afraid,” Borza said. “We need to make an example of these people.”