Michael Stabile, 15, was working hard and making his parents proud in the months before his death Monday from a likely drug overdose.
Stabile had been promoted at Pokeworks restaurant in Coeur d’Alene after working last summer at Silverwood.
He was getting ready to get his driver’s license and progressing through his education at Lake City High School on track despite the disruptions of COVID-19.
“He had a job, a girlfriend – he said he was in love, the whole thing,” his father Frank Stabile said through tears Wednesday. “He was a good kid. Everything was working out perfect.”
Grief for the Lake City High freshman has had a ripple effect.
By Wednesday evening, more than 100 people donated to a GoFundMe to raise money for the family’s funeral service. Lake City High sent food to Michael’s parents Tuesday night.
Michael’s sister Kirstin Drapeau said she learned the school had sent some kids home because they were so upset over Michael’s death.
In a Tuesday news release, Coeur d’Alene police pointed to a pattern of teens overdosing on counterfeit prescription narcotic pills laced with deadly doses of fentanyl.
Police suspect three teens’ overdose deaths since the fall in North Idaho were the result of laced pills, the release said.
Coeur d’Alene Police Captain Dave Hagar said the department is investigating to find the source of the counterfeit pills.
It’s hard for police to quantify how many nonlethal overdoses can be traced to fentanyl-laced pills when they sometimes learn about overdose symptoms long after they happen or “second or third hand.” Anecdotally, Hagar said they’ve seen more symptoms that match fentanyl overdoses in the past three or four years.
Drapeau said she didn’t see signs of Michael having a drug problem. She thinks he could have been experimenting with pills for one of the first times when he died.
Around 6 p.m. Monday, the boy’s parents went into his bedroom to check on him and found him not responsive. His parents are waiting for results of toxicology reports to know exactly what killed Michael.
Drapeau, 14 years older than her brother, remembers him as “just this little dorky kid with his glasses – he loved Cub Scouts, loved Spider-Man and Batman and go swimming at the pool in my mom’s neighborhood.”
Michael’s years as a Cub Scout translated into a love of the outdoors and hiking as a teen. He picked up skateboarding and loved video games.
“He went to work, he went to school and unfortunately did stupid things teenagers do,” Drapeau said.
“I think it needs to bring some awareness to other kids. There’s stuff on the streets and you can’t trust what you’re getting out there, what it’s laced with and what it’s mixed with.”
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