Gov. Little marks Fentanyl Awareness Day by remembering victims

Wednesday May 8, 2024

Lewiston, Idaho – Governor Brad Little highlighted National Fentanyl Awareness Day Tuesday with 600 high school students at Lewiston High School to share information about the dangers of this increasingly accessible deadly drug.

He was joined by Tarina Taylor, the mother of Zachary Taylor, a 26-year-old Lewiston resident who lost his life to accidental fentanyl poisoning in 2021. Tarina shared how her only child purchased a pill he thought was OxyContin from an unknown source on Facebook. He didn’t know it, but the pill was fake and contained enough fentanyl to kill six people. It killed him immediately. Tarina found Zach dead, with his faithful dog Tucker by his side.

The Taylors are a local Lewiston family. In fact, Lewiston High School is their family’s alma mater going back at least four generations, including Zach.

Tarina is committed to sharing her family’s story with the hope other families do not go through the same tragedy.

During his address to the Lewiston High School students, Governor Little noted the dangers of fentanyl and what the State of Idaho is doing to address the crisis. Fentanyl is 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine. Seven out of 10 pills with fentanyl contain a lethal dose. In one year, the rate of fentanyl-related deaths in Idaho doubled. Additional fentanyl facts and ways to act to protect our loved ones is available at

Governor Little also laid out the actions the State of Idaho is taking to turn the tide in the fentanyl crisis:

  • Idaho launched a campaign, Fentanyl Takes All, to help educate and inform Idahoans, especially our youth and their parents, about the dangers of fentanyl.
  • Idaho added more roadside testing equipment to help ISP get fentanyl off our streets more quickly.
  • Idaho will add a new statewide drug interdiction team at ISP to intercept fentanyl coming into our state.
  • Idaho is improving information sharing between law enforcement, first responders, health care, tribes, coroners and others to tackle the problem strategically.
  • Idaho is increasing resources for mental health and behavioral health to help prevent tragedy.
  • Governor Little signed a bill this year to require mandatory minimum sentences for people convicted of trafficking fentanyl.
  • Governor Little is working with border states to help reduce the supply of drugs coming into America across the open border from the drug cartels.

“Take this problem seriously and learn more about it. Most importantly, take care of each other. Look out for yourselves and your friends,” Governor Little told the students.