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Frankie Lewchuk had been a high school football star whose picture was in his hometown newspaper every week. Now, after struggling with a crystal meth addiction, he is trying to repair his life. (Radio Diaries (left), David Gilkey/NPR)

Teenage Diaries Revisited: From Kicking A Football To Kicking Meth

May 8, 2013 (All Things Considered)

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Frankie Lewchuk had been a high school football star whose picture was in his hometown newspaper every week. Now, after struggling with a crystal meth addiction, he is trying to repair his life. Frankie Lewchuk had been a high school football star whose picture was in his hometown newspaper every week. Now, after struggling with a crystal meth addiction, he is trying to repair his life.

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Name: Frankie Lewchuk

Hometown: Mentone, Ala.

Current city: Chattanooga, Tenn.

Occupation: Car stereo installer

Then:

"I used to be a wimp in school. ... Since I started playing football in 9th and 10th grade, all I did was get a haircut, start wearing decent clothes and play sports. Now I'm a popular person... and I want to keep it going that way."

Frankie was a high school football star whose picture was in his hometown newspaper every week. He thought he and his family were normal, until he learned that his father was on the run from the law. One day, the FBI showed up, and his dad landed in prison. Frankie's diary explored his relationship with his father, and how his life was both ordinary and extraordinary.

Now:

Years after graduating from high school, Frankie was back in the hometown paper, this time for drug-related crimes. He has struggled with an addiction to crystal meth. Now, Frankie is becoming a dad. He takes his recorder along as he attempts to repair his life and his relationship with his family.

Produced for All Things Considered by Joe Richman and Sarah Reynolds of Radio Diaries, edited by Deborah George, Ben Shapiro and Sarah Kate Kramer.

You can subscribe to the Radio Diaries podcast at NPR.org.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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