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2006 FDA HEARINGS OF PSYCHOPHARMACOLOGIC DRUGS ADVISORY COMMITTEE
The next speaker is Tony Noll.
MR. NOLL: I come to speak to you today on behalf of the statistically insignificant. My father was a police officer for 32 years in the city of West Dallas, which is a Milwaukee suburb.
In July, July 1st of 2003, he was having a little anxiety over some things at his house and not getting some sleep, so he called his family doctor and they prescribed Effexor, the SNRI. They prescribed it to him over the phone and even told him how safe it was. My mom told me this over the phone.
The night before, I talked to my dad on the phone. His voice tone was real odd. It was unfamiliar to me. My dad was the type of person who would talk my ear off, and I had do things to try to get him off the phone. His conversation was short and he said he wasn’t feeling himself.
My mom told me, “Something is really wrong with your dad. He’s not doing okay.”
I asked her if she needed me to come down to help and she asked me, “Why don’t we see how tonight goes?” That was the last time I would speak to either of them.
At 7:45 the next morning my father called 911, which I have listened to the tape, in what I would describe as a zombie-like voice said that he had just killed his wife and before anyone got there he would be dead.
When the police arrived, they found my father and my mother dead, my dad having put my mom’s arm around him before he took his own life.
My dad was only 58 years old, just three years out of retirement and my mom 56.
I am convinced this drug caused the death of both of my parents. They were smiling and happy people enjoying their retirement just in the weeks and days before July 3, 2003. That picture there (indicating) is only two weeks prior to it happening.
They had everything to live for. They had four grandchildren that they adored and even had plans for a Fourth of July party the day after, family reunions and anniversaries in the coming weeks and months.
That my father could be described as someone who would commit suicide is unfathomable to me, but someone that was a murderer is completely unfathomable to me.
My father referred to my mom in his retirement speech as the wind beneath his wings. I never saw my mom and dad fight. I never saw them argue.
People describe my dad as the best friend anybody ever had. He was buried with full police honors. The police department felt that this wasn’t him who committed this.
The Catholic Church didn’t bury him as a murderer and someone who committed suicide because they did not believe this was something he was capable of.
This doesn’t just affect the people that it kills. It affects everybody’s lives. My life is forever changed because of this incident.