“IRON SHARPENS IRON AS ONE MAN SHARPENS ANOTHER.”When Austin Box died in 2011, he was wearing a wristband quoting this scripture from Proverbs 27:17. The Austin Box “12” Foundation has adopted a variation of that idea, “Sharpen Each Other,” as our mission and founding principle.
The CDC reports that a death from prescription drug abuse happens every 19 minutes in the United States, more than from car accidents. An informed community is the only way to slow and eventually stop this epidemic, and lead to better representation and legislation at local, state and national levels. You have an opportunity and a responsibility to keep yourself and your community safe. We must Sharpen Each Other, every single day.
“After high school, he joined the OU football team, where he continued to struggle with injuries: a knee surgery and an elbow surgery. His last injury - a ruptured disc in his back - occurred at the beginning of the 2010 football season. This injury, I believe, is what set in motion his abuse of prescription drugs. Austin was originally given a limited supply of prescription pain medication, but it proved insufficient. Austin found what he thought was the answer to managing the pain: self-medicating and abusing his prescription. Austin began to suffer in silence as the drugs led him down a road of false comfort and delayed pain. Austin took responsibility for his own choices, so I don’t share his story to make any excuses on his behalf. He would want us to use his story to help Sharpen Each Other.”
“It’s time to lift the veil of shame”
We started The Austin Box "12" Foundation in Austin's honor, with the mission of educating the public on the dangers of prescription drug abuse. If this foundation prevents other families and students from experiencing the trauma and tragedy we've experienced, Austin's legacy truly lives on.