A week earlier, Brandon Baltzley, 26, was the head chef at Tribute, an ambitious, 170-seat restaurant set to open in the Essex Inn in the South Loop. He spent months developing his menu, crafting a document to tell the world: This is who I am. Instead, on this morning in late May, he will check himself into a drug rehabilitation program on the West Side. The night before, he paid $100 he owed his dealer. He gave his apartment keys to a friend with instructions on locating his cocaine paraphernalia. Throw it all away, he told him.
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