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The Fight to Save 10,000 Lives

A hotelier is among the many local residents tackling one of our country's most addictive problems.

The flagship of Gonzalez Recovery Residences (GRR) is this riverside plantation house in Vero Beach. The organization was founded by Boris Gonzalez, owner of the Caribbean Court Boutique Hotel in South Beach.

The flagship of Gonzalez Recovery Residences (GRR) is this riverside plantation house in Vero Beach. The organization was founded by Boris Gonzalez, owner of the Caribbean Court Boutique Hotel in South Beach.

Wealth, wealth and brains are considered assets in matters of life and love. But to someone fighting an alcohol addiction, they can be wretched liabilities. Health feeds the denial. Wealth resists the ordinary treatment milieu. Brains outwit those who seek to help, leaving the addict to function in an ever-shrinking universe of work and drink.
It is a maddening existence believed to affect at least 7 percent of the general population (many more if drugs and inhalants are factored in) and is accomplished with varying degrees of secrecy and finesse. Statistically speaking, that makes Indian River County (population: 139,767) home to nearly 10,000 people with a drinking problem. Without intervention, only one in 36 of those affected will die sober. With treatment, one-third will be recovery prone, one-third recovery averse, and the middle third will tend to recover with additional treatment. The odds of success can be improved considerably with the right post-treatment environment and a steady 12-Step diet, says Boris Gonzalez, 49, a nearly native resident of Vero Beach.

Read the entire article in the January 2009 issue