Local first responders are putting on a different uniform this in efforts to help two firefighters that are battling cancer.
The Lafayette Fire and Police Departments work hand-and-hand to save lives and to protect the community. The two agencies are now banding together on the court to fight an even greater challenge.
“He came in and told me I had stage four cancer and the first thing you think of is how much longer do I have to live,“ said Mitch Perrodin. He was diagnosed with Mesothelioma in October of 2018.
“You learn to appreciate more things in life and I think it had an effect on the whole family that way,“ said Perrodin. He’s a 25-year veteran of the Lafayette Fire Department.
Who he considers, his family on the other side wanted to make sure he wasn’t fighting this battle alone. “I couldn’t possibly imagine the amount of stress it brings on them. You know, with a situation like this. Especially, an unfortunate situation that nobody plans for to happen,“ said Officer Kendall Sam with the Lafayette Police Department.
Officer Sam launched the first basketball tournament two years ago. “When I was a fireman, the fireman always wanted to do some type of competitive game versus the police department, so when I switched over, they threw the challenge at me,“ he said.
First responders from all over are supporting their brothers outside of the badges and equipment. “When you go through something like this. That’s what you really need and it’s something you don’t really know until it happens to you,“ said Perrodin.
He said he’s thankful for the support and keeping good faith. “Just having a good outlook on life and hoping things work out for the best,“ he said.
“It would mean a lot to have a packed house honestly,“ said Officer Sam.
Captain Richard Leblanc is the other firefighter battling cancer receiving support from this event. He’s currently in New Orleans receiving treatment.
All proceeds will go towards their families. The event begins at 9 AM on Saturday, March 23, 2019, at LCA Sportsplex, 220 Stone Avenue, Lafayette, 70507.
Last year’s event raised money for the family of fallen officer Michael Middlebrook, who was killed in the line of duty.
To make a donation, or to get more information about the event, call Officer Sam with Lafayette Police Department at (337) 366-1033.