Cops for Kids and Tewksbury police partnered on Wednesday to help brighten the day of a local 3-year-old girl battling cancer by lining the streets of her town with police cruisers.
Gianna Lesselroth was diagnosed with leukemia when she was 19 weeks old in 2012, according to a GoFundMe page for her family. She went into remission, but the Lesselroth family discovered in May her cancer had returned. The Lesselroths, originally from Florida, moved to Tewksbury with Gianna and their son Logan, 5, who has been his sister’s bone marrow donor while she undergoes treatment at Boston Children’s and Dana Farber, Tewksbury Police Chief Timothy Sheehan told Boston.com.
Cops For Kids reached out to Sheehan about wanting to present the Lesselroth family with aid and support. Sheehan sent a call out to all chiefs throughout Massachusetts, asking them to send a cruiser, if able to spare one, to help line the streets between the police department and the little girl’s home.
At around 1 p.m., over 85 cruisers were sent from stations all over Massachusetts to line the route. Officers then followed the convoy to greet “this little warrior and her family’’ at the station, Sheehan said.
Upon arriving outside the station, Cops for Kids representative, Ed McNelley, presented the family with $5,000 to help with treatment. The police department also presented the family with gift-card donations, and a motorized replica Tewksbury police cruiser for the kids.
This is the fifth Cops For Kids presentation that the Tewksbury police department has organized in six years, Sheehan said.
“It was an excellent day,’’ Sheehan told Boston.com. “But I was telling Jerry McDonough of Cops For Kids, ‘If I never see you again for one of these, it would be great,’ but this was one of the best experiences for me and the department, and it was very special to have the family in my car with me.’’
The Lesselroth family expressed their gratitude for the presentation in a post on their Facebook support page for Gianna.