Drug War

Pain Patient Advocate Siobhan Reynolds Dies in Plane Crash


I am sorry to report that Siobhan Reynolds, a tireless advocate for pain patients who suffer needlessly because of the war on drugs, died on Saturday in a plane crash near Ohio's Vinton County Airport. She was 50.

Reynolds, whom I first met about eight years ago at a Capitol Hill forum on the undertreatment of pain, became passionately involved in the issue because of her former husband's difficulty in obtaining the medication he needed to keep his pain under control, which she believed hastened his death. She founded the Pain Relief Network in 2003 to support patients like Richard Paey, who was sentenced to 25 years in prison for improperly obtaining narcotics and who was pardoned largely due to Reynolds' efforts, and doctors like William Hurwitz, who repeatedly tangled with state regulators, the DEA, and federal prosecutors because he was willing to treat patients who had nowhere else to go for relief. Reynolds traveled the country to defend doctors she believed had been wrongly maligned as "pill mill" operators, highlighting the testimonials of patients who depended on these physicians to help make their lives bearable. In the process she made an enemy of Tanya Treadway, a federal prosecutor whose vindictive grand jury investigation of Reynolds (which never resulted in criminal charges) drove the Pain Relief Network out of business.

I am proud to say that the Reason Foundation, which publishes this website and Reason magazine, took Reynolds' side in this dispute, arguing in a friend-of-the-court brief (along with the Institute for Justice) that Treadway was abusing the grand jury process to silence a critic who was guilty of nothing but peaceful advocacy. Illustrating that abuse and the lack of transparency that allowed it, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit sealed Reason's brief (now available here), which was based entirely on publicly available information, along with all the other documents in the case, including the court's own ruling. Some of that material was unsealed after Reynolds asked the Supreme Court to intervene, but it ultimately declined to hear the case.

What was it that so offended Treadway? Reynolds organized protests in response to Treadway's prosecution of Kansas doctor Stephen Schneider. She talked to his patients and urged them to tell their stories. Her group sponsored a billboard in Wichita that proclaimed "Dr. Schneider never killed anyone." It produced a documentary that dramatized the conflict between drug control and pain control. In short, Reynolds vigorously exercised her First Amendment rights, and she did so in a way that discomfited people in power, highlighting the human impact of their decisions. Treadway's effort to intimidate Reynolds is a tribute to her courage, persistence, and effectiveness.

Via Radley Balko, who has an appreciation of Reynolds at The Agitator. More on Reynolds here. More on pain treatment here.

NEXT: Is Ron Paul Responsible for His Supporters' Views?

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  1. Rest In Peace.

    The world is a sadder place today, but still better than it would have been without her.

    1. There really is no justice in this world, considering that Ms. Reynolds has died and Tanya Treadway is still free.

      1. There is certainly no justice in this country.


  2. The title says Plash Crash.

    1. The curse of the combination of techno addicted, and fain?ant

  3. Can I be your proofreader? I do it for a friend’s mss., plus some light copy editing. I really need the money.

  4. In the process she made an enemy of Tanya Treadway, a federal prosecutor whose vindictive grand jury investigation of Reynolds (which never resulted in criminal charges) drove the Pain Relief Network out of business.

    I wonder whose side Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich are on.

    But at least they’re not racists.

    1. May Treadway get Chron’s Disease.

      Or even better, a thousand kidney stones in series. And may her doctor deny any painkiller stronger than Tylenol.

  5. The world was made better by Siobhan.

    Mrs. Treadway, if you are reading this, the world is worse off because of you. You are a vile woman, whose name will go down in history with Cardinal Wolseley and Roland Freisler.

    1. I agree and hope the next US Attorney launches a grand jury investigation to determine whether Treadway violated Reynolds civil rights.

      1. Supreme court already decided that Treadway didn’t.

        The mafia needs a big reason to change it’s mind and start disciplining a made man.

      2. THIS is what will finish PRN – the website was at least still staggering along. And personally, I hope someone investigates this plane crash. I worked with some great people ALL in crippling pain – like me – at PRN for two years. Siobhan was a great lady, and she will be greatly missed.


    2. In all likelihood Ms. Treadway will be forgotten in history in the same way that the Soviet prosecutors of gulag-worthy victimless crimes against the state have been.

    3. Mrs. Treadway, if you are reading this, the world is worse off because of you. You are a vile woman, whose name will go down in history with Cardinal Wolseley and Roland Freisler.

      But Treadway is an essential cog in the liberty loving Judicial Empire that reasonoids admire so.

      1. Oh come off it. Just cause some of us don’t believe that congress can haul a judge in because they don’t like or agree with their opinion doesn’t mean we worship some invented “Judicial Empire”. I have not seen one person saying they can’t be questioned or impeached for criminal acts, etc.

        1. The thing is, DesigNate, this judge and prosecutor WON’T BE hauled in, and what they did was disallow evidence that was exculpatory while the DEA practiced stalking and intimidation, misused the Grand Jury process to attack someone attempting to help defend an innocent person, and set Siobhan up so she was destroyed financially and professionally no matter what she did for the crime of thinking the the Rule of Law still exists in this country. All of material was sealed NOT protected the accused, or anyone but a fake trial run by two government officials in the “justice” system who started out with the DEA’s show-bust (they refused to allow the doctor and his wife to simply turn themselves in – they needed to show the media in that initial trial by media what terrible people they were – and then attacked with all the force and wealth of a government that can attack forever and that can and DOES ignore the law. Or twists it out of recognition.


    4. I agree, Tarran. And of course when Treadway ends up with Chronic Pain she’ll never miss a milligram of Oxycodone. I was one of the three longest running moderators and administrators during that “trial.” Without the corruption in the “justice” system Siobhan would have won that – and the law suit. Now, aside from REALLY wanting that plane crash investigated (this country seems a very unhealthy place for critics of the government just lately), I wonder what Ronin, her son, is going to do? I don’t know if there’s any family remaining for him to go to. Siobhan was an incredible lady. She’ll be greatly missed.

    5. name will go down in history with Cardinal Wolseley and Roland Freisler.

      Albeit with a far more petty and squalid ambition causing her notoriety.


  6. She was right to try to balance the stories of abuse with the outrageousness of ‘parrying’ addiction in the suffering

    1. How come on this thread you almost seem like a reasonably well grounded and pleasant individual?

      1. did not one of you get the memo on the Christmas truce?

        1. Fish, seriously 90% of the comments are not mine
          -I think it should be obvious

        2. Haven’t been checking the clear plastic pneumatic tube that my e-mail comes in.

  7. Should I include a jab about how it should have been Tanya Treadway instead, or is a simply an expression of sorrow sufficient?

  8. A fine lady, you’ll be missed, Siobhan Reynolds.

    1. I thought pain treatment was a City-statist plot, Rather!

      I’m glad to see you have some shreds of humanity.

      1. tarran,
        A. I’m not WI
        B. I don’t believe in prohibition despite that I don’t smoke, drink, or use drugs
        C. Christmas truce is over bitch 😉

        1. There was a truce? The hundreds of copypasta posts of anarcho-primitivist screeds was your idea of a ‘truce’?

          BTW, if you want to credibly deny being White Indian, you shouldn’t slip up and forget to change your handle. 😉

            1. If any of the WH posts are from my IP, I will donate 1k to Reason in your honor

              1. LOL! Rather, you think we don’t know you are using proxy servers to get around your ban?

                1. tarran, this site is full of computer guys, and likely some girls. Everyone leaves a footprint; just as the fucker who broke into my site and three of my email addresses
                  -two of which I’ve never used here

                  BTW, I cash a computer a year; saying I’m an expert is …

                2. Tarran,

                  She might have spoofed him a couple of times but White Indian is Godesky. He was at Strike-the-Root.com last night polluting the threads over there.

                  Good news though…no new material…he seems to be in reruns.

                  1. Naaah. A while back, she slipped up and made a comment that essentially admitted to being White Indian.

                    Also Godesky can actually formulate an argument. Rather can’t, so she copies and pastes stuff over and over again.

                    Also, WI and rather’s periods of activity and dormancy are pretty coincident.

                    The White Indian comment at the start of this particular thread is an example of her slipping up. Ol’ rather has a soft spot for women activists while Godesky hates the evil statists for their peddling of drugs. I don’t think Goesky would find Siobhan’s activism to be a good thing.

                  2. I have never spoofed him; frankly, I don’t understand is hunting thing

                    1. WTF?

                      Tarran , you would make a great juror 🙁

                  3. fiah, white Idiot was in reruns commencing with its first post. What a shitstain.

                    1. white Idiot was in reruns commencing with its first post.


                    2. I never wrote any comments as WI; I have several spoofs and I don’t know if they posted as me spoofing on his comments.

                      Most of you know if you make a joke comment, surgafree has a fit and claims it was me

                      When someone found WI site(s?), John said I should apologize. Your alpha ‘s reply was to drown the witch anyway; she was a bitch anyway.

                      Sometimes , you all remind me of what you yourselves proclaim to hate.

                      Who knew Ron Paul and I have so much in common?

                    3. While I feel no real need to justify anything I said to you or your “alter egos”, since the Godesky reveal (I thought it was tarran who outed the fat pant load…but my memory ain’t the greatest) I haven’t accused you of being the WI. I will still snottily respond to some of the other rather “like” posts but I think it’s likely that he, Godesky, is the “real” White Idiot.

                    4. It was sugarfree. He used his super-librarian powers to figure out the authorship of the passages that were being cut and pasted.

                    5. I don’t believe that is so; sugarfree was still accusing me after the WI site was revealed. IIRC it was Trick vick who wrote about it

                    6. Rather, please, don’t insult our intelligence.

                      The way you named your blog shows & your comments about a Christmas truce are evidence that leads me to infer that you are enemy centered – a person who literally is guided by a need to oppose or hurt an enemy.

                      Now suddenly you are a victim of nefarious enemies bent on smearing your good name?

                      Honestly people don’t care about you enough to smear you. You could start a new blog and start posting under a new name, and, if you behaved yourself and avoided griefing, nobody would be exerting the slightest effort to find out your new handle so they could continue a vendetta against you.

                      You will find your life a great deal more pleasant if you stop looking for enemies to give it meaning.

                    7. If you want to read my honest political views start here (published Aug 2010)

                      Tarran, rest assured you don’t know most of the games on this site; and I am but a bit player in this Globe theatre

                    8. “Tarran, rest assured you don’t know most of the games on this site; and I am but a bit player in this Globe theatre”

                      Ya know, it’s tiring to hear from some penny-anti blog-pimp about how “games” are played on this site. What “games”? Calling you on your bullshit?
                      No, you’re not a “bit player”. You’re a sleazy blog-pimp. There is no “bit” for you to play.

                    9. Aren’t you the person who resorts to name calling when your argument that Ron Paul is a racist gets destroyed?

                      Yeah,so no one gives a fuck what you think.

                    10. I love Paultards: reading comprehension is not their strong suit.

                      OK Mr So, why don’t you show me where I called Ron Paul a racist? Link and quote please.

                      Have fun!

                    11. I thought by the time stamp he/she mean’t me but I have never voted , nor will.

                      I don’t care if Paul wins over Romney, Gingrich, or one of the trailers.

  9. It would be nice if one of the Presidential “frontrunners” would at least pretend to be interested in actual outcomes rather than intentions.

    But that would disqualify them as serious candidates.

  10. Maybe CNN will send Gloria Borger to get a comment from Tanya Treadway.

  11. Hmm, how about more info on the plane crash??


    1. do ya really want to know?

  12. Well, is it suspicious or what?

    1. I was thinking that myself. I realize that plane crashes are going to occur, but I am also well aware that they are one of the favorite ways of certain jackals (such as the CIA ) to dispose of contrarian figures.

      1. KAL 007?

      2. I doubt the Feds would sabotage a plane when they could manufacture a Rico prosecution against her with very little sweat.

        This was probably your garden variety General Aviation plane crash.

        1. …..when they could manufacture a Rico prosecution against her with very little sweat.

          And milk it for tons of PR. Now she’s just gone and will be forgotten quickly by those who don’t know what she was about. Why can’t a Morris Dees type auger in once and a while?

          1. Life can be unfair.

            I am remembering a passage from one of my favorite science fiction series:

            When the Count spoke again at last his voice was weary. “I was ready to step down three years ago and hand it off to Quintillan.”

            “Yes. I was all excited.”

            “If only he hadn’t been killed in that stupid flyer accident. Such a pointless tragedy. It wasn’t even an assassination!”

            The Countess laughed blackly at him. “A truly wasted death, by Barrayaran standards. But seriously. It’s time to stop.”

  13. “they are one of the favorite ways of certain jackals (such as the CIA ) to dispose of contrarian figures.”

    How do they handle H&R contrairian posters?

  14. Oh the pain, the pain.

  15. RIP Siobhan Reynolds – you did your best to leave the world a better place.

    Ms. Treadway – I wish you to live the remainder of your life with chronic. agonizing pain. Bitch.

    1. Not that I would advocate this, but if it should happen that someone dumped Treadway at an ER with tungsten drill bits in her knees and a note on her shirt reading “I prosecute doctors” I would certainly contribute to his defense fund.

      1. I would also neither advocate such a thing nor fail to kick in a few bucks for the fund myself.

  16. Wishing her death, or suffering does not undo the damage of her popular front but personal experience of a loved one would give her the conviction to crusade for what the sensible know is true: There is nothing to be gained by letting people suffer by attempting to prevent abuse by those who will nonetheless be able to practice their addiction

  17. I just watched the documentary. Frightening how much of this mirrors my own life. I cannot help but wonder how many tragedies could be averted if we only could have had rational drug laws.

    Dr. Reynolds; you will be missed – but your efforts will live on.

  18. A vindictive statist using the authority of the most powerful government in the history of the world to destroy people? Common as sin.

    I’m searching for photographs of this prosecutor tomorrow — it’s to make sure I never stop to help if I see her burning in a car, stuck under the compacted roof.

    1. “it’s to make sure I never stop to help if I see her burning in a car, stuck under the compacted roof.”

      Or, as someone once said:
      “I wouldn’t piss on her if she were on fire.”

    2. I would help her…because I wouldn’t allow the bitch the satisfaction of a fairly easy death. By saving her, I could condemn her to a long life of debilitating pain with nothing stronger than Tylenol to ease her sufferring.

      1. Would I be revealed as bitter old cynic if said I doubt that rules like that apply to the master class?

  19. Yes, I read about her death this morning on LewRockwell.com

    A lot of good people are gone. I just hope we all can continue their legacy and protect liberty like they did – with fire in our heart fueled by virtuous conviction.

    So sad.

    1. “Fire in our hearts fueled by virtuous conviction” hasn’t been enough since the capitulation of discernible resistance at the end of Cleveland’s presidency. How many of us are there that give a true, genuine fuck? 50 million? Maybe a few million more? We’re a minority, and we live in a de facto unitary democracy with a nation-unto-itself government. Wanna bet Reynolds’ gain are gone by the next presidency?

      1. *gains

  20. tarran|12.26.11 @ 4:35PM|#
    …”Godesky can actually formulate an argument.”

    I’ve yet to see one; link?

    1. OT:
      Looking at some of Godesky’s wiki links, I find this:
      Notice a couple of things:
      1) Alaska, as part of the US, is cited as having the same population density as the Con-US.
      2) Japan, most of Great Britain, Germany, Holland, Switzerland, and Italy (which in spite of their misguided socialism, so far remain among the ‘prosperous nations’) have a greater population density than any ‘poor’ nation outside of India and some Caribbean islands.
      Whatever Miguel Contreras (the map is listed as “own work”) is intended to prove, it seems to prove that population density is no predictor of poverty and that Miguel Contreras is willing to sorta fudge data.

      1. Ya know, I *like* Link Wray, but is Link Wray Godesky?
        And I like Artie Shaw even more:
        But he ain’t Godesky either and he was a political ignoramus.

    2. He had a document online that was a manifesto of sorts. Too lazy to pull it up.

      It really reminded me of some of L Ron Hubbard’s early scientology stuff; full of tautologies and assertions about the purpose of organisms.

      Once he got past his axioms and premises bits of it did fit together.

      In the end, though, it was pretty much second-rate Malthusian crap.

      1. “In the end, though, it was pretty much second-rate Malthusian crap.”

        Have to admit to not wasting time chasing up Godesky’s ‘original’ work, but even his wiki page is pretty revealing:
        Which is a “user site” meaning it’s what the user posts. And it’s now “locked”; it was not a site of scientific discourse.
        The locked site refers you to:
        And you find:
        “I was previously known as Jefgodesky, until I locked myself out of that account.”
        I’d say ducking and weaving pretty much defines vermin shit.
        Right, vermin shit?

  21. Siobhan had my respect and gratitude for achieving the near impossible feat of my husband, Richard Paey’s pardon and release from a Florida prison in 2007. God bless her. Siobhan was strong-willed, compassionate, difficult, and lionhearted! We will all miss her strong voice and neverending support for pain patients and their doctors.

    1. I think I speak for all of the regulars when I express my regret at what you and your husband went through.

      In a just world, he would have been left alone to try to regain as much quality of life as was possible.

      I strongly believe that 100 years from now, that Richard will be listed by historians as one of many victims of a bizarre hysteria much like Giles Corey.

      1. “In a just world, he would have been left alone to try to regain as much quality of life as was possible”
        ^ this

  22. So, basically, pure opium in a pill form. Opium is a highly addictive DRUG. It does not get rid of pain, it just gets one so high that they don’t care about the pain. Bad idea. If pot was controlled by the drug companies, it would be legal.


    1. Thus speaketh a person who has never known a chronic pain patient as you are wrong on every particular.

      Pain patients do not get high on their meds unless they are over-medicated, their pain is blocked, and they can function normally for years or decades as long as they get their meds.

      Now, kindly bugger off.

    2. First, “pureopium” isn’t nearly as powerful as more concentrated derivative, Second, it doesn’t get pain patients “high”. It’s the same molecule made by the body for mitigating pain in the dorsal horn of the spine, in which case it’s an endorphin. Third, it causes no lasting damage, unlike other chronic pain “solutions” that just feed the medical corporations. Unless of course someone really overdoes it an quits breathing – something that almost NEVER happens to pain patients, and that takes an effort by anyone. Drugs, as it turns out, are NOT “addictive”; there are people who are predisposed to addiction, a variation of OCD, and people can get “addicted” to almost anything.

      Pot can’t be controlled y ANYONE – it’s a damned weed and it grows almost anywhere, all by itself. It can’t be patented, and it’s such good medicine, with so many other uses, that this corporate-oriented government will never DARE legalize it.

      Learn what you’re talking about before you spout off, okay?


  23. Siobhan was the patron saint of prosecuted physicians. I was one of those physicians. She was my guardian angel! She saved my life and my career. I know she is in heaven looking down on us. Her work is not yet finished. She lived an amazing life. Thank you Siobhan for being my friend.

  24. Perhaps one day, there will be a wall, a huge memorial wall( like the one they have for the Vietnam veterans)…except this one will have the names of the millions of chronic pain patients who died too soon, or took their own lives because they were unable to find a doctor who would treat their pain.

    These people are/were the true victims of the morally reprehensible “War on Drugs”, as are/were the few courageous & compassionate doctors who gave them what they needed to ease their suffering….& doing so at great risk to not only their careers, but their personal freedom. Their names belong on that wall too.

    And, at the top of that wall will be the name of someone who was neither a chronic pain patient nor a doctor, but simply a woman who was the wife of a pain patient. An intelligent woman who soon realized that her husband’s situation was not unique, but a living hell imposed on too many others throughout the country. A brave woman for whom acceptance of this travesty was not an option….

    Siobhan Reynolds, thank you & bless you for all you did to help the most vulnerable, for (literally) putting your money where your mouth was, for all the good you did & for never quitting. Your work was not in vain. Others will be inspired and will continue the work.

    And perhaps, one fine day, this “wall” will simply serve as a reminder of a very dark age in the evolution of humanity, a page in our history that need never be re-written….so long as it is never forgotten.

  25. It amazes me that so many doctors STILL call us liars because they can’t find anything wrong, or they insist we’re addicts because the inadequate dose of an opiate they’re comfortable with giving us isn’t enough – the abuses are too many to list here, and after 28 years with chronic pain, it still happens to me. Siobhan made it a little bit better for a time, and she will be greatly missed. There will be no one to take her place; she was unique.

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