LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Shawn Clusky has seen every side of Kentucky's battle with pain pill addiction over the past 10 years.
Clusky first tried OxyContin at age 17 with his school buddies, shortly after the high-powered narcotic painkiller went on the market. He was an occasional user and seller until about age 21, when he became fully addicted.
When he was 25, he got arrested at a Lexington gas station for selling $15,000 worth of pills. Clusky received probation, but was still using until he was sent to the WestCare rehabilitation center in eastern Kentucky.
He now works there as a counselor.
"A lot of times people believe a drug addict comes from poverty," he said. Not true. "Nine out of 10 of the guys I partied with came from millionaire families. Their parents didn't use; they had good families."
Ten years ago, Kentucky learned it had a major drug problem.
OxyContin, a powerful prescription painkiller, was being abused at alarming rates in the Appalachian areas of eastern and southern Kentucky. A decade later, the level of pain pill abuse throughout the state and across the country is at epic levels, officials say.