Cory Gilmartin

Cory Gilmartin, of Falmouth, lost his life to a heroin overdose on Jan. 24, 2014.

But his mother, Joan Peters-Gilmartin, a physician assistant, didn't want her son -- and others who succumbed to drugs - to be just a statistic.

That's why she and a group of activists from a grass-roots Sandwich-based group, Communities United for a Drug Free Environment, put up 330 purple flags in three Cape Cod towns June 17 to signify the number of people who have died of drug overdoses from 2000 to 2014 on the Cape and Islands.

In his obituary, Cory's family described him as "a loving son, consummate friend and caring soul," who was also "an avid snowboarder and chess player, and enjoyed fishing and boating. Cory was also a Wampanoag Tribal Member."