An Iowa mother’s grief unites hundreds at walk to combat overdose stigma

ANKENY, Iowa – Ann Breeding, founder of “Steps of Hope,” was a guest on the Grieving Out Loud Podcast when she met Angela Kennecke at the DEA Family Summit in Omaha. Breeding recently brought together hundreds of individuals in Ankeny to raise awareness about the stigma of drug overdoses.

Breeding established “Steps of Hope” after her son, Daniel Bailey, died in 2020 from a drug overdose. Each year, she organizes a walk to promote substance abuse awareness and combat stigma.

Ann and her son, Daniel, two months before he died

On Saturday, the third annual walk took place at the DMACC campus in Ankeny, attracting hundreds of participants. A poster with the faces of Iowans lost to drug overdoses and nearly 500 purple pinwheels served as reminders of lives lost and the need for awareness.

Breeding’s son Daniel aspired to make a difference, but his life was tragically cut short by addiction. Now, Breeding carries on their shared dream of raising awareness.

During the event, individuals who lost loved ones to drug overdoses shared their stories, fostering healing and challenging the stigma.

KCCI News story on Steps of Hope Walk