ABOUT RANDY MICHAEL
November 9, 1999
- July 17, 2021
Randy Michael | August 2020
Randy Michael Bacchus, III
November 9, 1999 - July 17, 2021
Forever 21, Randy died by Cannabis-Induced Psychosis and Suicide.
Randy started smoking marijuana at the age of 15 to find social acceptance, and quickly became an advocate for the “healing” properties of Cannabis. As an individual with a busy mind, Randy enjoyed the brief period of euphoria he experienced while using.
However, misled by an industry that profits off of addiction, he unknowingly and permanently damaged his brain. The result of his use, the cannabis trifecta - early age of onset of use, the frequency with which he used, and the high potency he uses, that caused his demise and we miss him dearly.
To bring awareness, inform and educate people as to the real truth about Cannabis, Marijuana and THC, and help with youth and parents struggling with addiction, we have created
"Be Extraordinary, Be You!"
Artistic. Entrepreneurial. Driven.
Our Son's Journey with Marijuana, Cannabis and THC
This is very personal look at our son, as he struggles with marijuana, cannabis and THC. He believed that marijuana saved his life, but in reality, it did the complete opposite. Randy's potency of marijuana and THC, led him into Cannabis Induced Psychosis (CIP), and ultimately, suicide.
Who was Randy...
Born on Nov. 9th, 1999, Randy was a beautiful baby weighing 9 lbs, 3 oz. - lengthy, bald, and long-fingered. Though they share the same name, his fair skin contrasted with his Father’s dark complexion perfectly. An easy baby, he grew quickly and transitioned to an active toddler. We called him “Bubbee,” a nickname he would reject several years later as he stepped into adulthood.
As a little guy, he had a deep, raspy voice. We captured several of his sweet moments on video, which we are so thankful for, as these snippets in time showcase who he was and what he loved most. Among his favorites: are Cheetos, French fries, and Root Beer. He enjoyed music, skiing, swimming, boating, and participating in sports. He loved to hang out with his dad at his office, visit construction sites and take rides in the convertible.
As our only son, he had plenty of “girl time” with his three sisters. He played a different role in each of their lives, often keeping things interesting with his silly, playful personality. Brooke and Randy would lose themselves in the imaginary world of make-believe. When Sabrina came along, Randy gained a true partner in silliness and laughter! Anna and Randy had a unique relationship as well, as Anna was always patient with Randy and his shenanigans.
As a child, Randy was incredibly goofy, and he always kept things interesting. He could be quite naughty or truly angelic, and there was little room for the in-between. Though often sweet, enduring, kind, compassionate, creative, and humorous, he could also be fiercely independent, defiant, impulsive, and difficult.
From a young age, it was apparent to us that Randy was wired a bit differently. We sought professional guidance and tried our best to help him. Despite this guidance and our best efforts, Randy struggled during his middle and high school years. He began to seek comfort in using substances when he was 15 years old. Weed in particular became a way for him to self-medicate, and it led to much friction in our home and his personal life. He had a rocky high school experience and attended a few different schools, ultimately graduating on time. We were so proud of him. Onto bigger and better things!
If we would have had it our way, Randy would attend a college near home or join the armed forces. But Randy was never one to do anything anyone else’s way. Instead, he desperately wanted to go to Colorado to ski and attend Boulder. Up to this point, his independence served him well. In August 2018, he moved to Boulder, started working full-time, got his residency, and began taking classes at a community college. Eventually, he started his own web design company, Bacchus Creative, and a fashion company, Maxim Streetwear, USA. He managed to do all of this while holding a full-time job and taking classes. Again, we were so proud of him, and he seemed happy.
In 2020, Randy came home for a couple of days for Heather’s birthday in June, and then came back in September for Labor Day Weekend. Both visits were very peaceful, and we enjoyed our time with him at home.
Midway through COVID, and after his 21st birthday in November, something changed. He started to slowly pull back and was unable to come home for Christmas given his full-time job selling cars. We offered to visit over the New Year, but he did not have the time to spend, given his work, and the businesses he looked to expand. He became more distant, was slow to respond, or was only responsive when it was convenient for him.
In March 2021, his fast-paced lifestyle caught up with him, and he asked us for help. We felt our prayers were answered - he found his “rock bottom”, this could be his fresh start, and the end to our constant worry. Unfortunately, being as fiercely independent as he was, he went to detox and then to treatment in south Florida, and after one day he left. He made his way back to Denver, and he truly believed that he could do it on his own. Nothing we said was right, and according to Randy, everything we tried to do was wrong. He wanted to keep self-medicating with weed, and he was obsessed with pursuing music. Randy wasn’t really Randy anymore. For almost a month, our conversations and communications with him were vile, threatening, and hurtful, and in order to protect our family, we blocked his calls and his texts.
In mid-April, Randy found a psychologist in Denver named Nancy. He was under her guidance, meeting once a week for an hour. We even were able to have a virtual family therapy session with Randy and Nancy on July 9th, and it was good to see his face, and his progress seemed good. After his July 15th session, Nancy sent us a note that Randy was really trying hard and making some positive strides. He started treating his ADHD with Adderall in late June and found less need to self-medicate with weed. Unfortunately, we believe Randy knew his brain wasn’t working correctly, his depression and the reality of the consequences of his past actions began to settle in as his sobriety increased, and he became overwhelmed.
Thankfully, we had been talking to Randy, loving him from afar, and being supportive. At our last therapy session, he shared his appreciation for his upbringing, our support, and our love. He shared his love of us with us. Amazingly we learned that he returned to his Catholic Faith, volunteered at mass, and attended confession just days before taking his life. He told us that he no longer had to say, “I’m sorry”. It seemed he had a fresh start. He was about to start a new job, and things seemed to be looking up.
Randy called Heather on Friday evening she had him on speakerphone. He was looking for some guidance, and someone to listen. She listened and tried to provide some perspective and support. We replay our last conversation with him often. He had been paying someone to record his music, he kept getting large bills from Denver Health, he had a large charge on his Credit card to fix his car, he knew his brain wasn’t working super well and he was in withdrawal from cannabis use. He sounded sad, given the volatility of the past 6 months, his reluctance to go to treatment, we had decided that we would love and support him, but not insist that he get help. If I only knew then what I know today, we would have taken different actions.
Randy took his own life shortly after sending that message in the early hours of July 17th, 2021.
Our reply to him when we woke up that Saturday morning remains undelivered - words of encouragement that he never had the chance to read. If only we would have know just how sick and damaged his brain was from his Cannabis use, maybe he would still be here today? Randy’s last text to us floats in and out of our minds each day and breaks our hearts.
We instinctively shout back, “Randy! You were a beautiful and complicated soul! You were so loved - it did not have to be this way!” But we are only met with silence and emptiness from the void he left. Helpless and unable to rewind time, there is nothing we can do or say that will bring him back. However, we can share his story and our story to prevent anyone else from having to experience such great loss.