Recalling BIOHAZARD: how a Brooklyn New York hardcore band prevented my suicide

3 mins read

The story begins in 1989 – I was a 15 year old Jewish kid from the suburbs of Boston; locked in a prison for “bad kids”. Naive, unprepared and weak; an easy victim.

I wanted to be dead.

This is my personal story of how BIOHAZARD inadvertently kept me from killing myself.

Do you know what they do to weak and vulnerable boys like me, in the sort of places that I was locked in?

For those who are reading these words, and you do know from personal experience, then you know because either you were a victim, a witness or a perpetrator.

Otherwise, shut your fucking mouth because BIOHAZARD taught me to fight and that is what I have done every day since.

My first communication with BIOHAZARD was via letter writing. They responded to me with a handwritten letter, some stickers and information about their upcoming gig at Derringers in Brockton, Massachusetts. I was unable to make the gig.

In October 1990, I finally was able to see BIOHAZARD play live for the first time. They were opening for THE EXPLOITED at the Channel Rock Club in Boston along with TYPE-O-NEGATIVE and TOXIC NARCOTIC.


My teenage years were ultra fucked up and confusing. I would spend the week in a facility that supervised and/or facilitated the abuse of me, as if my life was worth nothing.

I would spend the weekend at my parents home with my mentally sick parents.

The only safe place I could be where no one would hurt me was at a hardcore punk show.

Before heading into Boston for the gig, I raided the freezer at my parents home and took about six of her delicious brownies with me as a gift for BIOHAZARD.

At the gig, I ran into Keith Bennett of WRECKING CREW. I met Keith less than a year earlier at my first show in November 1989 featuring NUCLEAR ASSAULT and WRECKING CREW. If you were around Boston back then, you will likely remember me.

The only safe place I could be was at a hardcore punk show.

I don’t remember every specific detail, however, while talking with Keith, he asked me for one of the brownies.

I flat out told him “no”; the brownies were for BIOHAZARD. That exchange resulted in a lifelong connection with Keith; the good, bad and ugly. Keith is once again a superhero in my life because much like me, he took the broken parts of his life, and he chose to become the best man he could. He is succeeding and so am I.

Somehow I got the brownies into the hands of BIOHAZARD. I bought a t-shirt and for years I would have a one man slam-dancing party in my cells. I lived in different jails for kids until 1991.

For a kid who had nothing and no one and who had parents who did everything they could to kill their son; today is September 29, 2023, and BIOHAZARD continues to be the soundtrack to my life revolution.

It is never a cliche to say “Punk Rock Saved Your Life”!

In my case, BIOHAZARD is one of those bands, who helped save mine.

I left the United States in 2018 to get away from people, ideas and mentalities that were getting in the way of my peace and happiness.

This blog was written, by the beach, in the south of Mexico. I have not seriously thought about ending my life in a long time, but the idea of taking an action to never feel the pain of being a survivor again; is always present in my mind.

I prefer to be a warrior, and if I die, then I die; being happy is worth everything.

My choice is to live and be happy in this moment; all we have is ourselves and we can create the life we want with our thoughts.

If you are unhappy and you want to make your life better; take control of your life, stop making excuses and stop blaming others and do whatever you need to do to help yourself.

“Across the tracks no one takes your back”

Learn how to take your own back, and then no matter what happens to you: you can live and be happy and hold your head high.

When the thoughts of ending my life do creep into my heart and brain; I put on BIOHAZARD’s self-titled debut album and I live another day. If anyone knows the guys in BIOHAZARD personally, please send them this blog article. Thanks guys.

Tough times ahead of me
Tough times behind
I fight for my life, I fight till I die
I fight to save my mind
It’s justified violence
It burns from within
Sometimes a man must fight
It’s not always a sin
It’s not a sin!
Justified violence

Check out Gregorio’s most recently published books here:

Crusty Craig “Gregorio” Lewis is a longtime contributor to IDIOTEQ. Gregorio is a punk rocker from the United States, living in México, and after traveling to forty countries around the world giving talks and workshops on how he has Survived the Impossible, both professionally and for the Punx, he has been living in his mountain pueblo for nearly four years. Contact Gregorio directly at [email protected] and check out his numerous published books, at Sanity is a Full-Time Job.

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