Timothy Treadwell, AKA Grizzly Man — death by bear

I stopped using more than 20 years ago although in truth, my battle with  the demon nicotine, the  hardest of all, finally ended only 9 or 10 years  back — I really can’t remember exactly — and  from the look of things, the struggle  with addiction will continue for what’s left of my life.

I’m 71  as I write this, and I have no idea where my continuing journey will take me, and, by default, those I love.  Nor do I know how I’m going to get  to where I finally end up.

Extreme lengths

Addicts will go to extreme lengths in denial, and then, finally, after they’ve accepted they’re powerless, they desperately search for  the means to stay stopped.

Some go to groups such as the Narcotics  Anonymous Alcoholics Anonymous or any of the other AA ‘step’ program; and.

Some, such as British singer Amy Whitehouse, die whn their addictions get the better of them. Some enter rehab units and a very rare few manage to white-knuckle their way through  their journeys .

And then there are those such as Timothy Treadwell,  who become addicted to a quasi-religious rapture.

He fell in love — in love with the wild grizzlies  of Alaska to the extent  he became  thoroughly hooked on them and their lives,  identifying with  them totally, seeing himself as their only true protector, setting himself in direct opposition to the authorities.

timamyThen one day hist addiction  —  killed him, and by default his girlfriend, Amy  (right),  who stayed by his side quite literally  un5il death  did them part in what must be  one off the most poignant  and tragic love stories ever.

They were both found dead in the their tent in the wilds, partially eaten by one of the animals Timmy, at least, had loved almost worshiped, so much.

In the documentary, Grizzly Man, directed by Werner Herzog and co-produced by Jewel Palovak, Treadwell’s  one-time girl[friend and business partner, during a highly  introspective interlude, he confesses, “ I used to to drink a lot.”

He goes on he has no idea if there’s a  God or not, but if there is, “thank you so much for giving me a life,” and he’s close to tears in his gratitude.

But he was also a heroin addict and alcoholic and it could be argued it was  his desperate efforts to escape from their ravages, and not those of a grizzly bear, which ultimately  and finally killed  not only him, but also Amy.

‘I guess I was going to die for it,…’

“I was troubled,” he confesses; I drank a lot… to the point where I guess I was going to die for it, or I’d break free of it.

“But nothing  was going to stop me from drinking”.


“I went to programs, I tried quitting myself, I did everything I could to try not to drink he says, aid everything I could to drink. And it was killing me until I discovered this land of bears  and realized they were in such great danger they needed a caretaker to look after them, but not a drunk person; not a person messed up so I promised the bears if I would look over them,

“… they became so inspirational, living with them and  the foxess, that I did: I gave up drinking.

“It was a miracle and absolute miracle, and the miracle was animals.

“Now I live here, and  it’s dangero, very dangerous. I run wild with the Bears; so free. Like the child  with these animals. It’s so cool, and  it’s very serious.

In the docudrama grizzly Man,  Timothy’s father tells us Timothy tried to smoke marijuana in the house, “but I quickly put the kibosh on that.”

Timothy eventually went to California where he tried to get into movies.

His father says he tested for the bartender role in  the TV series Cheers losing out to Woody Harrelson and, “that’s what really destroyed him; that he did not get that job on  Cheers.”  He  “spiraled down”.

One of his friends,  and actor, relates how Timothy survived a near fatal overdose and “that’s when he changed his persona, attempting to pass himself off as Australian.

it takes great  strengths and determination  to break fhe shackles of addiction.  And no one can question  Treadwell’s.

Nor can they doubt  the power of his convictions.

In the meanwhile,  addiction  is now, more than ever,  described as a disease.  But in reality, it’s an  all-consuming affliction — a condition of  extreme suffering and distress with no cure except  death  by one means or another.

Jon Newton — myblogdammit

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