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Rick Harrison of ‘Pawn Stars’ fame says fentanyl killed his son

By Mandy Donalds
January 28, 2024

Rick Harrison, well known from the popular television series Pawn Stars, has publicly addressed the opioid crisis following his son's death from a fentanyl overdose.

In a recent and heartrending development, Rick Harrison of Pawn Stars fame has come forward to discuss the opioid epidemic, a topic of personal significance following the untimely demise of his son, Adam Harrison.

Adam's passing, which occurred in Las Vegas, was due to a fentanyl overdose. This tragedy has cast a spotlight on the broader issue of drug abuse and its impact on families, as reported by FOX News.

Rick Harrison speaks on the fentanyl crisis

Rick Harrison, in an interview with Fox News Digital, expressed his grief and concern over how fentanyl transformed his son.

He depicted Adam as becoming a drastically different person under the influence of the drug, leading to poor decisions and time spent incarcerated.

Rick's candid account brings attention to the devastating effects of fentanyl on individuals and their loved ones.

He said:

Fentanyl turned my son into someone he wasn’t, and that brought with it bad decisions and spending time in jail.

Adam Harrison's struggle before his death

According to a report by the New York Post, Adam Harrison had a tumultuous period leading up to his death.

He was incarcerated for several months before relocating to a guesthouse in the Las Vegas area.

His behavior during this time raised concerns, including instances of self-harm and irrational conversations. These events culminate in a distressing narrative of a young man battling deep-seated issues.

In the days leading up to his death, Adam exhibited worrying behavior, as reported by a neighbor.

His actions, which included barricading himself in the house, suggested a severe mental and emotional struggle. A detailed account in the incident report paints a picture of a person grappling with inner turmoil and possibly the effects of substance abuse.

The tragic discovery of Adam's death

Adam Harrison's death was a sudden and tragic event.

He was found unresponsive in his bed by the landlord of the guesthouse where he was staying. The circumstances surrounding his death, including the presence of drug paraphernalia, point to the severe consequences of opioid addiction and its often-hidden impact on individuals and families.

The discovery of Adam's unresponsive state was a shocking and sorrowful moment.

When the landlord, alerted by a concerned tenant, entered the guesthouse, it marked the end of Adam's struggle. The scene, with its indications of drug use, underscores the harsh realities of addiction.

Law enforcement and substance found at the scene

The Las Vegas Metro Police Department, upon investigating the scene, found evidence suggestive of drug use.

The presence of vials containing an unidentified substance, alongside other items typically associated with narcotics, provided a grim context to Adam's passing. This aspect of the case highlights the often-hidden battle many face with addiction.

Police reportedly found "two vials of a redacted substance next to the mattress," in addition to "foil with an unknown pill, lighters and narcotic paraphernalia straws."

Fentanyl: A lethal opioid crisis

Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, is recognized for its potency and danger.

The Drug Enforcement Agency classifies it as a Schedule II controlled substance, illustrating its high potential for abuse and risk. The statistics on overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids, primarily fentanyl, are alarming, emphasizing the urgent need for addressing this crisis.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's report on the rise in overdose deaths related to synthetic opioids, primarily illicitly manufactured fentanyl, is alarming. It underscores the urgent need for increased awareness and action in combating this growing health crisis.

Adam Harrison: A life remembered

Adam Harrison, the son of Rick Harrison and his ex-wife Kim, had a life closely tied to his family's business.

Although not a prominent figure on the television show Pawn Stars, his involvement in the family's pawnshop in earlier years was significant. His untimely death not only highlights the personal loss for the Harrison family but also serves as a poignant reminder of the far-reaching impact of substance abuse.

Adam was Rick's second child with his ex-wife Kim. Rick and Kim also have a son, Corey, who is regularly featured on Pawn Stars. Rick remarried and has a son, Jake, with his second wife, Tracy.

The Harrison family's ongoing struggle

The Harrison family's experience sheds light on the broader societal issue of drug addiction and its devastating effects on families.

Rick Harrison's openness about his son's struggle with fentanyl addiction and its tragic outcome serves as a call to action in addressing the opioid crisis.

It's a reminder of the personal stories behind the statistics and the urgent need for effective solutions. While Adam was not featured in Pawn Stars episodes, he reportedly worked at the shop and in the family business at some point during his life.

The cultural impact of Pawn Stars

Pawn Stars, a popular reality show, has become a cultural phenomenon since its debut in 2009.

As the second-ranked reality show on television, it has a significant viewership and influence.

The show's connection to the Harrison family tragedy underscores the intersection of public figures' personal lives with their professional personas, highlighting the human aspects behind the screen.


  • Rick Harrison of Pawn Stars has spoken out about the opioid crisis following his son Adam's death due to a fentanyl overdose.
  • Adam Harrison's behavior prior to his death raised concerns, including self-harm and erratic conversations.
  • The discovery of Adam's body and the evidence of drug use at the scene highlight the severity of the opioid crisis.
  • Fentanyl's potency and the alarming rise in opioid-related deaths call for urgent action against this crisis.
  • The Harrison family's story is a poignant reminder of the personal toll of drug addiction and the need for awareness and solutions.
  • Pawn Stars popularity contrasts with the private struggles of its associated family, emphasizing the human element in public figures.