The victims of ‘ice’


As with any war we often idolize those that performed heroic acts. Acts of bravery are often talked about for generations. We often hear epic tales of great warriors like that of Achilles, Alexander the Great, and Attila, to name a few. We praise such acts of courage but rarely do we examine the true meaning of a warrior. In my opinion, what separates such soldiers is whether or not they can truly demonstrate compassion and empathy. Does he fight for glory or does he fight for the preservation of something greater than himself such as fighting for his people’s right to freedom?

Only after the last soldier has left the field of battle do we really see the destruction that such a feud has caused on society. Only way after the dust has settled do we hear of the victims. We hear of horrifying tales of tyranny, cruelty, and punishment. We almost never hear about the courage they as victims faced under such extreme circumstances. The war on “ice” too has its unsung heroes. They are the families that endure the mistreatment and punishment placed on them by an enemy they love. Why do I mention these victims, you may wonder? I’ve heard the saying, “Don’t blame yourself as you are the victim.” I for one wholeheartedly disagree with such a notion. I believe that one must be answerable to their actions by accepting such blame. Blame yourself as this should serve as a reminder that others are affected by your selfishness. Come to terms that this is a problem. Don’t sugarcoat it! I say the aforementioned with only the utmost respect to my brothers and sisters of the “glass pipe.” Why be so harsh about the topic, you might wonder? Things need to be said and only through your acceptance can you safely say it is time to quit. Only you alone can stop and or prevent yourself from relapsing or even partaking in a smoking session. There are programs out there both government and private facilities designed to help you heal during your most vulnerable time. I applaud such programs, but am a believer that such programs are useless to you unless your are truly and sincerely “in it to win it.”

I’ve been there and I know that using “ice” gives a euphoric feeling of invincibility. I also know that it sometimes gives you that spike of courage when dealing with hard times. You don’t need to remind me that it gives you the strength to make the day go by faster as you have a higher level of concentration as a result of the drug. Let me ask you, though, to search deep inside you and find that “one thing” that defines you. You can’t honestly tell me that this drug is who you are! I ask you to really do some soul searching. To ease things a bit and help you search for what defines you, I’ll share a bit of what I feel defines me.

What I feel helps me these days is the prospect of reuniting with my family. I would like to state clearly that I was not incarcerated for either possession nor distribution of this illicit drug. Why take on this crusade against the use of it then? It’s a matter of identifying the least common denominator, and in every scenario it leads back to its usage. If I didn’t touch the stuff I would highly likely still be with my wife and children today. If I didn’t get introduced to this drug, I would not have come to mistreat and devalue the concerns my wife put forth about using it. Had I not selfishly put this drug above my family’s continuous pleading, maybe we would still be spending the holidays as a cohesive unit.

As many of you are may be aware, I started my career at a low paying yet physically demanding job similar to being a maintenance worker. I eventually worked my tail off to go back to school and get an education while continuing to persevere at whatever jobs paid the bills. I eventually became dean of NMC-CREES. This is just one tier away from the holding the highest post at NMC, which is the Office of the President. Why is such background information so important? It’s important that everyone know that I did not achieve what I’ve come to achieve alone. I could not have become who I evolved to become without the tireless support of my wife Julie Ogo-Manglona and my children (Christian, Julian, Ian, Tristan, and Ethan). What I did was all for the welfare of my family. They gave me the inner strength to keep chugging along. I’ll admit there were times of frustration, but looking at my kids sleeping well at night spoke to me. What it told me was, “Daddy’s gonna make sure things are good for all of us.” For you readers out there that still believe in my leadership, I thank you for the many words of inspiration. With this I say, don’t blink as now I’ve got a new lease on life and will work on earning your trust once again.

As I see my kids playing during their visitations with me these days, I catch myself telling them the same words, “Daddy’s gonna make sure things are good for all of us.” I hope that you my afflicted friends can come and find that inner strength to find that thing that defines you as I did. I won’t lie, its gonna get worse before it gets better, so prepare yourself mentally for it! In closing I would like to dedicate my fight against “ice” to my victims which I mentioned above as my source of strength but as a result of my usage of this drug became my biggest victims, they being my wife and five sons. I would like to end this on a high note by saying to all of my friends and family, “Thank you and stay tuned as there still is a fight left in this old boy.”

Ross Manglona
As Lito, Saipan

Contributing Author

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