Founder remembers 'Locks of Addiction' gate one year later

darden locks of addicition story
Posted at 6:12 PM, Aug 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-17 18:14:18-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — In observance of Addiction Awareness Month, the founder of the 'Locks of Addiction' gate revisited the project a year after its inception.

Pam Stamper's son, Chelis, died in 2014 after his battle with addiction.

She started the gate in 2021 on Newtown Pike near Main Street to give others a place to remember anyone that found themselves trapped in the chains of addiction.

Since then, the project exploded in popularity. Over 200 locks have been added so far.

"Anybody that has lost to addiction, anybody that is fighting addiction. Please come hang a lock. Let's be proud of what you have accomplished in your life," said Stamper.

Taking things beyond locks, people have also added various mementos. From bracelets to hats, to shoestrings.

"You know this is something. This meant something to somebody," said Stamper.

Stamper hopes the gate will continue playing a key role in helping people find the strength to move forward.

"There's people out here. There is help out here. You've got it," she said.