KEY POINTS

  • Arizona House Candidate Chris Taylor has suspended his campaign after suffering a drug overdose
  • He has been openly battling opioid addiction for years 
  • He was running for the Republican nomination for the state's 1st Congressional District

A House candidate and combat veteran is suspending his campaign to seek treatment for substance use disorder after a recent drug overdose.

CNN reports that Chris Taylor, a Safford, Arizona city council member and congressional candidate, relapsed after years of uninterrupted sobriety.

"Today, I have suspended my campaign for the US House of Representatives and am seeking treatment for substance abuse disorder. I will fully cooperate with local authorities on any matters arising from my recent relapse and overdose,” Taylor said in a statement to the press.

Before the suspension of his campaign, he was seeking the republican nomination for Arizona's 1st Congressional District, which is currently held by Democratic Rep. Tom O'Halleran.

Taylor claims to be shocked himself by the incident, saying he didn’t know what happened. He says he will be taking this opportunity to figure out what went wrong and what he has to change in his ongoing recovery.

Taylor enlisted in the army in 2007 and served two tours in Afghanistan, a period in his life that he claims directly contributed to his opioid addiction, about which he has always been candid.

"The horrors I witnessed on the battlefield came home with me and like many veterans, I didn't know how to cope. I sought help at the VA but fell victim to a government that forgot its promises. I began misusing prescriptions and developed an opioid addiction. It was a long road to recovery."

Taylor is insistent on fully facing this setback head on and putting one foot in front of the other as he works through the issues. He also founded a non-profit called Desert Eagle Addiction Recovery to help combat veterans and all others proactively address their addiction so they can improve their health and quality of life.

He has not announced if he will be resuming his campaign or what his immediate professional plans are.

US Congress The U.S. capitol building in Washington, D.C. Photo: Reuters