By Teri Vance

Hurl Mahurin lost his wife, Linda, to breast cancer in 2014. She was diagnosed at stage 4 three years prior, and the cancer eventually ate away at bone and tissue in her back and leg.

“With the kind of pain she was in, they prescribed her tons of medications,” Mahurin said. “She was so miserable. It was the worst thing I’ve ever seen.”

When she passed, he buried mounds of medication under suitcases and other assorted items in his guest room closet.

On Saturday, he filled a large paper bag with the medications to drop them off at the north Save Mart in Carson City, as part of the biannual Drug Roundup sponsored by Partnership Carson City.

“It just time to start cleaning everything up,” he said. “The grandkids couldn’t get to it where it was, but I wanted to make sure.”

As part of the federal Drug Roundup initiative, Partnership Carson City volunteers collect

unused or expired prescription drugs, over-the-counter products, prescription liquids, pet medications and syringes.

“We do it as a way to keep our water supply clean because otherwise people will flush them down the toilet,” said Tasha Martel, outreach coordinator for Partnership Carson City. “We also want to keep it out of the hands of people who don’t need it. Kids can easily get into medicine cabinets or if you throw them in the trash, people can just get into it and do with the drugs what they will.”

Volunteers collected 504 pounds of pills and 150 pounds of needles during Saturday’s roundup.

“This is the largest amount we’ve collected so far,” Martel said. “We want to see it continue to grow.”

Last October, the roundup produced 490 pounds of pills and 148 pounds of needles.

“It could be very dangerous if people don’t dispose of them properly,” Martel said.

Lura Collins dropped off her late son’s needles and other medications used to treat his diabetes. She was a regular at the roundups while he was battling his illness.

“It’s wonderful to have this,” she said. “My son would change medications, and instead of polluting the water, we would save them and just bring them here to drop them off.”

James, of Carson City, brought by some unused painkillers.

“I had a tooth pulled back in September, and I never used them,” he said. “I just want to do the right thing.”

Partnership Carson City will host the next Drug Roundup in October. In the meantime, pills can always be dropped off for disposal as well at the Carson City Sheriff’s Office, 911 E. Musser St.

For more information, call Partnership Carson City at (775) 841-4730 or go to pcccarson,org.