LETTER: The rest of the story, Roxanne Current speaks

To the Editor:

It’s been difficult sitting on the sidelines and watching my husband, Gary Current, used as a campaign issue in this year’s Osseo mayoral election. I guess I never considered Gary a menace to society and public enemy number one. If his “Wanted” poster appears at the post office, I hope someone will let me know.

All kidding aside, it saddens me to think that someone who has loyally served the Osseo community for almost three decades could be subjected to this public persecution. As an Osseo Fire Fighter and former Fire Chief, he has put his life on the line numerous times to help save residents, business owners and their properties in fires and severe storms. And he has been on countless medical calls to come to the aid of residents in their critical times of need.

Our Osseo Fire Fighters are servants and protectors of the community alongside local and state law enforcement, and they deserve our respect and gratitude, not harassment. Can you imagine holding an infant who has died of SIDS, or being physically blown across Main Street after an explosion in the Hance Hardware fire, or holding the hand of an elderly resident you’ve known your whole life as they say “I’m so glad you are here” before taking their last breath? They don’t do this for fame, fortune, recognition, to climb some corporate ladder or be on the front page of the newspaper. They do it because they truly care about people; they are a light of hope and compassion in dark situations.

Do I consider Gary a saint? Of course not, he’s my angel with a crooked halo and a huge heart. His loyalty to family, friends, his business and the Osseo Fire Department is limitless. He is the guy people can always count on for help. But like I said, Gary isn’t perfect; he is subject to the frailties and shortcomings of our human condition, and as such he suffers from the disease of alcoholism.

What hasn’t been shared at city council meetings or in the Osseo Press is the important part of Gary’s story. HE’S IN RECOVERY AND HAS BEEN SOBER FOR OVER 2 YEARS! This is no minor accomplishment.  The statistics are quite alarming. If 100 people try to get sober, about 5 percent of them will make it to 90 days sober… and of those who make it to 90 days sober, about 5 percent of THOSE people will make it to 2 years sober (spiritualriver.com). Gary is beating the odds one day at a time, and I am immensely proud of him! He puts his faith and trust in our loving and merciful God each and every day to help him maintain his sobriety.

Gary was blessed to be able to receive inpatient care at one of the nation’s leading treatment centers, Hazelden in Center City. He was there for a month and had outpatient care for 12 weeks. He attends weekly AA meetings and the Celebrate Recovery Program at Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Maple Grove, and he speaks to new patients regularly at the Maple Grove satellite location for Hazelden. He has the ongoing support of family, friends, local business owners, his business partner and their customers, his church family, the Osseo Fire Department and an amazing sponsor. Gary is as passionate about his sobriety as he is about the fire service. You may ask, but will he be sober forever, and my response to you would be, “We take it one day at a time.”

It is my hope and prayer that Gary will be supported by the Osseo community as he continues to serve them as an Osseo Fire Fighter. My heartfelt thanks to those friends, local business owners, Osseo Fire, Police, and City Council Members who have reached out to him with a vote of confidence. He continues a family legacy of community service started by his parents, Wally and Maxine Current, many years ago and will hopefully continue to do so for a long time to come.

As Paul Harvey would say “And now you know the rest of the story.”

P.S.:  Gary and his parents approve this message.



Roxanne Current

Wife of Gary Current