HAMILTON, OH (FOX19) - Dennis Matheny has called Hamilton home for the past 55 years.
The church pastor is fond of his neighborhood but claims a "few bad apples" are causing problems on Parkamo Avenue – also called "heroin alley" by some.
Day after day, Matheny watches drugs being sold and taken on his street corner.
"I've found needles right here on the corner by my fence where my grandson could reach through and get it. And I'm tired of it," Matheny said.
On Monday, he decided to take matters into his own hands.
With a large cardboard sign reading "No Drugs Today," Matheny sat outside his home armed with a strong but compassionate message to drug dealers.
"I'm not against these kids that are on heroin. I want to help them. I pastor a church right up the street and my vision is to help them. I don't want to see them die," Matheny said.
The city of Hamilton is located in Butler County, where drug overdoses are the leading cause of death in the county.
The heroin problem is too large for police to handle, Matheny says. He wants his neighbors to take notice and, hopefully, inspire them to join his cause.
"If any of the guys who use the drugs want to stop by and talk to me, I'll be more than glad to talk to them and show them a better way that they can live their live," Matheny said. "They don't have to live
His granddaughter posted a photo of the sign to Facebook, where it's been shared nearly 5,000 times.
Most of the 900 comments on the photo are positive, but Matheny said post also garnered a few negative reactions and threats.