AAU Game brings kids together!

Updated: June 22, 2013

In Monroe, Wash., a bedroom community just outside Seattle, everyone knew the Curcio family. But after Sept. 30, 2008, Anthony Curcio, the family’s golden boy, would become infamous.

Watch the full story on “20/20″ TONIGHT at 10 p.m. ET.

Curcio’s father was a former star wide receiver at the University of Idaho, and he and his wife ran a successful landscaping company. Following in his father’s footsteps, Anthony Curcio excelled in basketball and football, breaking all receiving records at Monroe High School.

“Catching a touchdown pass, that’s a true feeling. It was everything that I wanted to be, it was falling into place,” Curcio said in an interview with “20/20.”

He was popular and talented, and he was even dating his school’s cheerleading captain, a girl named Emily. He was the life of every high school party. “The first time I ever drank, it’s like, boom, I light up like Vegas,” Curcio said.

Beneath the golden boy image there was a monster lurking — addiction — that was on the brink of being unleashed.

After graduation Curcio received a scholarship to play football at his father’s alma mater. During practice one day, Curcio tore his anterior cruciate ligament, ending his promising college football career and introducing him to the powerful pain killer Vicodin.

“I was insecure about not being the best athlete,” he said. “I was insecure about not being good enough, about throwing away my football career. And I was insecure, really, just about being a failure. Vicodin took that [insecurity] away from me.”

When his prescriptions ran out, Curcio, craving the waves of euphoria that the pills brought, began forging prescriptions or injuring himself to get prescriptions, stealing from friends’ medicine cabinets and doing almost anything he could to get high.

To fund his habit, Curcio stole furniture from the university and sold it on eBay; he also counterfeited prized baseball cards and sold them for thousands of dollars.

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