Kenneth Blacknell

“Before I got into addiction, I was an ordinary person. I went to four years at Appalachian State. I had a minor career with the Dallas Cowboys football. That’s when I said notoriety, I was just trying to always stay in the limelight.

The lowest point of my life was incarceration and drug addiction. Actually, I think [incarceration] saved my life. I was in drug addiction for 17 years. It gave me time to readjust my thinking , and put my priorities in order. And self examination and what I wanted to do with my life. I had lost so much time — it tool so much from me. I wanted to build a relationship with my daughter, I wanted to build a relationship with my family, and I wanted to have a stronger bond with God.

I have worked at the thrift shop for 10 years. I started here doing community service. I had just got released from prison, and it was part of my probation. They were impressed with the way that I [worked], so I put in an application, and they called me back and hired me.

I’m more interested now in the ministry, helping people. Whether that be physically, spiritually, mentally, always trying to build them up. I encourage them.”