KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Amid the Christmas decorations and the holiday displays, there is a tree in the City County Building that serves a different purpose.
This tree is meant to honor the lives of people lost to suspected drug overdoses. The Knoxville Police Department said that since 2018, more than 1,300 people died of a suspected drug overdose in Knox County. Around 430 of those were in just this year.
People who lost loved ones are invited to honor them by placing an ornament on District Attorney Charme Allen's Overdose Memorial Tree. It will be on display throughout the holiday season, according to a release from officials.
"These families have lost a piece of them," said DA Charme Allen. "They have lost a mother, a brother, a child, a father and that person is gone forever. They were lost because of addiction, because of drugs and it doesn't really matter why they're gone, but they're gone."