Grand Traverse County Deputies Investigating 3 Suspected Overdose Deaths in 1 Week

Three suspected overdose deaths in less than a week.

Now Grand Traverse County investigators are trying to determine if they’re connected.

The Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office confirms it started with the death of Marc Ruben from Farmington Hills last Tuesday.

Then, a Traverse City Denny’s employee was found unresponsive in the bathroom, and died.

And now a woman was found dead in a Green Lake Township home Sunday.

Police are still waiting on toxicology results but they do suspect heroin and, in one case, fentanyl.

Detective Sergeant Fink with Michigan State Police tells us they are working with the Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office and the Farmington Hills Police Department to determine if these three deaths could be connected.

“You’re just rolling the dice each time, you don’t know what you’re putting in your body,” said LT. Brian Giddis with the Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office.

Three possible overdose deaths in less than one week in Grand Traverse County, with one possibly from fentanyl.

“I hope that this information, knowing that the potential for a much more potent drug out there that can be lethal, would push people in the direction of seeking help. That’s really the only way that you’re going to be protected from this, because there’s no way of knowing what you’re taking otherwise,” explained Lt. Giddis.

Addiction Treatment Services CEO Chris Hindbaugh said, “As a country, we’re losing the equivalent of one airplane going down every single day, and that is happening in our community. We’re part of that stat.”

The Hertler family from Traverse City lost their son, Michael, last year to an overdose and are now donating $10,000 to Addiction Treatment Services.

That money is being used to make more than 300 of the lifesaving naloxone kits for anyone in the community.

“It can be overwhelming to keep hearing about all these overdoses, but there is hope. There are opportunities to get help and our agency and others in the community are here and we hope to reach people before they get ill, and definitely before they die,” explained Chris.

For more information on Addiction Treatment Services click here, or call 231-346-5216. Those interested in getting a naloxone kits should call 1-800-622-4810.