Dominic Vito Boraggina

Dominic Vito Boraggina

Beautiful, kind, loving, giving, charismatic

Dominic was a loving, sensitive person with beautiful blue eyes and a warm smile. He cared about others and looked out for them, often giving food, money and cigarettes to people who were homeless. He was a good listener and always positive. He was good with technology and loved to make people laugh. He enjoyed playing golf, hockey and football and spending time with his nephews, playing hide and seek, wrestling, and giving them rides on his shoulders.

Dominic worked as a lifeguard for several years and as a pool manager for the public pools. He was also a landscaper and worked construction. He planned to become a licensed welder and wanted to make a home in Columbus, Ohio with his girlfriend, Brianna, who he planned to marry. He told his mom, Cathy, that he knew he was behind his siblings in terms of meeting his life goals, but he was going to get himself together and take care of her as she aged; he was a momma’s boy. Addiction changed Dominic’s goals and dreams; he became a slave to it and couldn’t break free.

His mom was a team leader for a support group for those struggling with addiction and their loved ones. He was proud of her involvement in the community and wanted to work together with her to provide resources and share his experiences with those who needed help. Unfortunately, he missed the first event they were to attend together because he used. She said: “I lost him shortly after that.”

While attending a support group meeting, after Dominic passed, his mom met an employee from the treatment center where he stayed for a few months. She told her that Dominic was positive, friendly and would help by sitting and talking with residents when they were struggling. One resident credited him with saving his life by helping him when he was down.

His mom says Dominic’s biggest accomplishment in life was “the amount of love he had for others and how much he gave of himself.” ‘Personal space didn’t exist for him, he would curl up on his brother’s lap and snuggle,’ he was that loving and close to his family. Like many parents in a similar situation, Cathy reflects on what else she could have done. “I feel like I have failed at the most important job I ever had, being Dominic’s mother.” ‘I have much more understanding and compassion for those who struggle with substance use than I did before Dominic’s addiction.” She has become an activist in her community, trying to educate people about addiction and how to get help.

Dominic’s mother, Cathy Bukowski, provided the information for this narrative.

November 25, 1994-September 3, 2019

Age 24-Lived with addiction 5 or more years

Share this story from The INTO LIGHT Project

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

More Into Light Stories

Read more biographies from this exhibit.
Devin Hart Bearden

Devin Hart Bearden

Caring, athletic, bright, witty, attractive At 6’2”, Devin was lanky, handsome, and a natural athlete. Equally at home on a skateboard, snowboard, or when surfing, he was a pleasure to watch; so fluid and graceful. He was a good soccer and baseball player and loved hiking in nature or being at the beach, especially on the annual family beach trips to Hatteras in North Carolina. [...]
Read More »
Andrew Aegerter

Andrew Aegerter

Lived life to the fullest Drew had a huge heart and would do absolutely anything for his family, friends or strangers. He was funny, charismatic, smart and athletic; good at everything he attempted. Though he loved all sports, baseball was his favorite. “We spent every summer and fall on a baseball field and loved every minute,” his mom said. ‘Drew was a catcher and had the biggest cheering section, and definitely the loudest mom cheering him on.’[...]
Read More »
Brandon Taylor Beeler

Brandon Taylor Beeler

Fierce, loving, protective, father, son Brandon was fun, loving, kind and helpful to everyone. He wanted to see people happy and connected. He was protective of those he loved and a risk taker. He enjoyed spending time with family, watching movies and football, and reading Charles Bukowski poems. [...]
Read More »
Dakota “Ophelia” Berg

Dakota “Ophelia” Berg

Beautiful, tragic, short, sad, lonely, misunderstood Dakota was a deep, beautiful soul. She loved fully and unconditionally and was passionate about teaching acceptance for all people. She loved animals, especially her dog Keta, her loyal protector. She had an intense love for family and was striving to get sober and be an exemplary role model for her younger sisters. [...]
Read More »

Bring an Exhibit to Your State

Interested in bringing The INTO LIGHT Project to your State?
Find out how you can make this happen.