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From sobriety advocate to tragedy: The downfall of ex-US Army veteran, Daniel Hyden

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Daniel Christopher Hyden, a former police officer and US Army veteran, has been charged with the tragic deaths of three people and the injury of 11 others during a Fourth of July celebration in a Manhattan park.

The suspected drunk driver’s ex-girlfriend, who wished to remain anonymous, expressed both shock and a sense of inevitability upon hearing of his involvement in the incident.

Hyden’s ex-partner, with whom he shares a 12-year-old daughter, revealed that Hyden has battled alcoholism for years.

Watch the moment Hyden was arrested by officers from the NYPD and the reaction of the ex-girlfriend 

“He’s supposedly sober but obviously not,” she remarked. “This is the reason we’re not together, because of his issues. I told him this would happen one day. I told him.”

The ex-girlfriend detailed Hyden’s “long history” with alcohol abuse, mentioning that his father also struggled with the same addiction.

Despite their split in 2016, she was unsure if Hyden had managed to stay sober. “After we broke up, he went and got his alcohol and drug counselor license. Went back to school to try and better himself,” she said. “He did want to stop. He wanted to do good. But he had an illness. It’s a lifelong illness.”

Hyden’s battle with alcoholism made it difficult for him to maintain steady employment. At one point, he worked as a police officer in Georgia. Neighbors and his Facebook profile indicate that he served as a US Army veteran. In 2020, Hyden authored a book titled “The Sober Addict,” which aimed to provide practical guidance on living with and managing addiction. He also ran a YouTube channel where he offered addiction advice and workout videos, billing himself as a Certified Addiction Recovery Coach and Certified Personal Trainer.

Now, Hyden faces severe legal charges, including aggravated vehicular homicide, driving while intoxicated, driving without a valid license, and eight counts of second-degree assault. The community is left grappling with the devastating consequences of this tragic incident, highlighting the ongoing struggles faced by those battling addiction and the far-reaching impacts their actions can have.

The incident has cast a somber shadow over what was meant to be a joyous celebration. As the community mourns the loss of three lives and prays for the recovery of the injured, questions arise about how this tragedy could have been prevented and what more can be done to support those struggling with addiction.

Daniel Hyden’s story serves as a stark reminder of the complexities and challenges of addiction. While he once sought to help others through his experiences, his own demons ultimately led to a catastrophic outcome. The incident underscores the critical need for ongoing support and intervention for individuals battling addiction, as well as the importance of addressing and understanding this pervasive issue.

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