For anyone who has sought treatment and recovery for alcoholism, one of the most helpful resources is Alcoholics Anonymous. Taking this 12-step program and attending meetings with people in the same situation as you, without judgment, is a comfort many find beneficial in their road to recovery.

One of the co-founders of this organization is a Marion native who, in 1935 was the first man to receive the services of the main founder, Dr. Bill Wilson.

Marion's Henry G. "Hank" Parkhurst, Jr. lost his job at Standard Oil of New Jersey due to issues related to his alcoholism. It was then that he checked in at Charles B. Towns Hospital in Manhattan in 1935 for treatment, according to the Cedar Rapids Gazette.

Under Dr. Bill Wilson's treatment and observation, Parkhurst used the 12 steps, minted by Wilson, that would later become the Alcoholics Anonymous program.

Parkhurst and Wilson became fast friends and business partners, with Wilson and his wife Lois even moving in with Parkhurst after losing their home. Parkhurst's own sobriety, unfortunately, didn't last very long as within just a few years he and Dr. Wilson began to drift apart due to business disagreements and philosophical and religious differences.

Parkhurst was born in Marion on March 13, 1895, and perished on January 18, 1954, at the age of 58 in Mercer County, New Jersey. Despite his own inability to maintain sobriety throughout his life, the methods he helped create have served countless others in erasing their challenges with alcoholism. Learn more about Henry G. Parkhurst HERE.

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