'We're all here to help and bring this kid Christmas'By JASON SCHREIBER
Union Leader Correspondent November 08. 2017 8:54PM
Where to send cardsAnyone wishing to send Christmas cards can send them to:
c/o Barbara Bush Children's Hospital at Maine Medical Center,
22 Bramhall St.,
Portland, ME 04102
GREENLAND — Dozens of New Hampshire and Massachusetts police officers armed with Christmas cards came together Wednesday to bring some early holiday cheer to a 9-year-old boy battling terminal cancer at a Maine hospital.
The officers in cruisers and on motorcycles rode in a motorcade to Portland, Maine, to deliver the cards to Jacob Thompson, at Maine Medical Center.
Jacob, who lives in Sanford, Maine, has captured hearts across the country with his wish for homemade Christmas cards to brighten what could be his last holiday season; his cancer has reached stage 4.
He has received more than 14,000 cards.
“We’re all here to help and bring this kid Christmas,” said Epping police Sgt. Stephen Soares, who helped organize the officers.
Charlestown officers D.J. O’Sullivan and Jon Graham were among the first to arrive Wednesday morning at the TA Travel Center truck stop in Greenland. They had a nearly two-hour drive just to get to Greenland, but they said it was well worth it.
“If we can put a smile on his face, the drive is the least of our worries,” O’Sullivan said.
The officers headed to Portland shortly after 11 a.m. and met up with other officers from Maine.
Concord police detective Nicole Murray said she’s “swimming” in paperwork at the office, but felt she needed to participate.
“I think it was a no-brainer. A lot of hands went up wanting to go do this and I was fortunate enough to go. I think that as a department there’s nowhere we’d rather be today than doing this,” she said.
The trip was personal for Dover detective Andrew Courter. His wife is Jacob’s cousin.
Courter learned about the ride Tuesday and jumped at the chance to join his police family.
“Jacob’s been fighting this for a long time. It’s been very much a rollercoaster ride,” he said. “It’s been pretty trying on the family, but he’s a fighter and he’s done the whole thing with a smile on his face.”
Courter said Jacob, who has a younger brother, has always been a fan of police officers.
He described Jacob as a typical 9-year-old boy who’s full of life. “He’s a very sweet kid,” he said.
Courter was impressed by the support from the law enforcement community.
“Everybody here is under the same impression that no kid should have to go through what Jacob or any of the other kids there have gone through. Anything that we can do to bring a smile to a face or bring a little joy to their life is something that we’re absolutely happy to do,” he said.
Portsmouth Lt. Michael Maloney said he felt honored to join fellow officers.
“For all the stuff we see and deal with on a daily basis that makes the job discouraging, frustrating, you go home at the end of the day angry ... and sometimes physically hurt, but when you get an opportunity to do stuff like this, to take a little time out of your day, the effects that it has on him and his family you can’t put into words,” Maloney said.
The motorcade included the Salem Police Department’s newly lettered pink breast-cancer awareness cruiser.
“In a situation like this, a kid with cancer, it’s something that pulls on the heartstrings and we’re going to be here for him,” Salem community affairs officer Michael McCarthy said.