Robert Joseph Weisz

Robert Joseph Weisz

Vivacious, adventurous, fearless, happy, troubled

“Bobby was literally the sunshine for me,” his mother Tisa said. “And it wasn’t just me; that was true for the entire family.” Bobby was the firstborn and was close to his sister, Nina, and brother, Noah. His parents divorced when he was 13. Later, when his mother remarried, he had another sister, Lila, 17 years younger than he was. Lila talks about Bobby often and deals with the pain of losing him by riding horses.

Bobby was a kind, compassionate, quick-witted adventurer who enjoyed an adrenaline high. His childhood was idyllic and unremarkable in most ways. He had four sets of grandparents and great-grandparents who were active in his life. The family did everything together: barbecuing, pizza parties, and baking Christmas cookies.

Bobby was brilliant. He loved the beach, forests, and backwoods. He enjoyed any sport with a ball and caught on quickly, often earning a key role on the team. Bobby loved being the person who gets the glory. He was a showman, very “flourishy,” his mother said. A year-round sports family, Bobby’s dad coached any sport he played. Bobby took it hard when his parents divorced. His dad left two days prior to Bobby’s 13th birthday. He finished high school and stayed in college for two semesters before his addiction took over.

Looking back, it was Bobby’s stepfather, Charles, who pointed out subtle behaviors he observed that could be problematic. Like many parents, Tisa had no experience with drug use and thought, “No, not my kid.” When Bobby was about 15, she realized there was a bigger problem. Still, it took some time to comprehend the depth of it.

Traveling to Bali with his girlfriend awoke the travel bug in Bobby. He had an interest in seeing Greece, Turkey, or Russia. He and his girlfriend lived in New York for a time, but both returned to their hometowns. The plan was to take a year, both get treatment for substance use and later get married and have a family.

Bobby got treatment and took the fearless moral inventory of the 12 Steps seriously. He took action to make amends. He and his father reconciled and had a wonderful relationship. Unfortunately, the many treatment centers Bobby attended did not teach him coping skills, and he relapsed. Bobby used heroin and Xanax, but he did not die from an overdose. “People who are addicted often learn to know just how much to take,” his mom said. “He could have lived a long time on heroin; he already had.” It was fentanyl in the Xanax that caused his death.

Tisa stated, “Parents rarely realize it, but we are learning to be parents just as much as kids are learning to be their own person. They teach us so much.”

Robert’s mother, Tisa Weisz, provided the information for this narrative.

August 15, 1993-January 10, 2021
Age 27-Lived with the disease of addiction for 12 years.

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