Mother explains why she posed for photo next to dead husband's body with her two young children

Eva Holland posted the image, which has since been shared over 270,000 times, to "raise awareness"

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The Independent US

A mother has explained why she posted a photo with her children next to her dead husband.

Eva Holland's image alongside children Lucas and Ava and late spouse Mike Settles has been shared more than 270,000 times on Facebook.

Mr Settles died aged 26 on September 2nd from a suspected heroin overdose, following years of addiction.

The picture shows Ms Holland, with her son and daughter, next to Mr Settles's body in an open coffin.

Ms Holland, who lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, said she published the image to “raise awareness”.

Explaining her decision to post the image, she said: “the main reason I took it was to show the reality of addiction. If you don’t chose recovery every single day this will be your only way out.

“I know a lot of people may be upset I’m putting it out in the open like this but hiding the facts is only doing to keep this epidemic going. The cold hard truth is heroin kills.

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The post has been shared over 270,000 times

Ms Holland, who was in a relationship with Mr Settles for 11 years, explained how his addiction developed after becoming hooked on painkillers.

Mr Settles spent time in rehab at the end of last year, which Ms Holland credited for helping him find “his purpose for living again, he found his gorgeous smile again; he became the man, the son, the brother, the dad that we all needed him to be again.”

Tragically, Ms Holland then details how following a clean period, he took a painkiller for a toothache which led him to relapse and use heroin again.

“He said he could handle it, that he could stop on his own and didn’t need to get help again. Well he was wrong, last Wednesday he took his last breath,” she wrote.

Ms Holland posted yesterday to clarify "that although we know he struggled with addiction, they [Mr Settles' parents] have not gotten a coroner's report back yet with the official cause of death".

Anyone struggling with addiction can contact Talk to FRANK on 0300 123 6600 or visit www.talktofrank.com.

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