The Mom Who Took on Purdue Pharma for Its OxyContin Marketing

Illustration: Sam Whitney; Getty Images Twenty-nine-year-old Jill Carol Skolek was a single mom in Phillipsburg, New Jersey. April 29, 2002, was the first time her six-year-old son, Brian, had come back from school and not found her waiting for him at the bus stop near their house. When he got home he discovered his mother in bed, in what he thought was a deep sleep. He fixed a snack, spent a few hours watching cartoons and playing with toys, and then crawled beside her and fell asleep. The next morning, when she still seemed asleep, he shook her and kept yelling “Mommy.” Finally, he called 911. “I need your help. I think my mommy’s heart stopped.” Only when the EMS arrived did they realize that Jill had been dead since the previous day. Jill’s mother, Marianne Skolek Perez, a part-time nurse, lived 30 minutes away in Whitehouse Station. The […]

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