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Oroville man overcomes addiction and painful past

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BANGOR, Calif. - To observers on the outside Jerry Dorgali lived a perfectly normal middle class life in Detroit.

"I grew up with great family dynamics," said Dorgali.

That was until he turned 6-years-old.

"I was raped and molested by my uncle for about three years when I was between six and nine," he said.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse as many as two-thirds of all people in treatment for drug abuse report that they were physically, sexually, or emotionally abused during childhood.

"I've got some mental issues going on because of my childhood," said Dorgali, now 36. "I was real rebellious. My mom had passed away when I was a child as well," he said.

By 13 and now living in Chico, that experience may have led Dorgali to what some call the gateway drug to harder stuff.

"It was marijuana," he said of his first drug.

By 14 he was stealing pills from his father.

"I started with Vicodin," he said. "I'd steal them from my dad, because my dad has chronic back pain."

From there it got worse.

"Oh, I was taking heroin, I was taking prescription pills, Oxycodone, Vicodin."

Dorgali is receiving treatment at the Elijah House in Bangor, where they believe the most successful method for drug rehabilitation comes through faith in Christ.

Dorgali says he's seen the light which has helped him bear his cross.

"Jesus Christ is my foundation. He is my rock. This is where I can start to build a new life," he said.

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