Officer battling cancer gets support from community

Jacqueline Adams passes out informational flyers and takes donations from customers in the drive through at Dunkin Donuts. Photos by Horace Holloman

In April of 2016 DeKalb County police officer Darrell Price noticed a lump on his right thigh near the groin region. After tests and various medical procedures Price was told he has cancer. The news was devastating, he said.

But in the months to follow, Price said he’s found strength in his friends, family and the DeKalb County community.

On July 29, District 3 Commissioner Larry Johnson and The Heart of South DeKalb partnered with Dunkin Donuts to give Price’s family a monetary boost.

Dunkin Donuts, located on Wesley Chapel Road, donated 5 percent of the proceeds from any purchase to go toward Price’s efforts battling cancer.

“I love that my community is here for support. I don’t feel defeated in any way,” Price said during the Coffee for a Cop event. “This kind of news that you get is devastating. Everyone sort of looks up to you and you don’t know how to carry yourself as a man. It’s hard to hold your head up, but I had to look towards my family members, and when I finally held my head up I loved what I saw. My wife was here, my kids were here and my community was here.”

The Coffee for a Cop fundraiser lasted from 7:30-10:30 a.m. Price said he was overwhelmed by how many people came out to show their support. Donations for Price were also collected at the drive
Price was diagnosed with Stage II Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a cancer that begins in the white blood cells.

The news came as a shock to Price, who said he had no family history of cancer.

Darrell Price shares a laugh with his wife Carla Price during the Coffee for a Cop event to help with Darrell Price’s cancer treatments
Darrell Price shares a laugh with his wife Carla Price during the Coffee for a Cop event to help with Darrell Price’s cancer treatments

“I don’t drink, I don’t smoke. They can’t tell me where it came from but it knocked on my door and I answered,” Price said.  

Price has worked with the DeKalb County Police Department (DCPD) for the past nine years. DCPD Chief James Conroy said the department is happy to lend a helping hand.

Price has been on sick leave from the DCPD for about three months, Conroy said.

“I told him when he’s ready to come to work he can come to work. We just wish them the best and the community really supports them. The officers don’t always see it, but in an event like this you really see it and we get to highlight the real relationship between the police and the community,” Conroy said.

Conroy, who was once diagnosed with skin cancer, said the Coffee for a Cop event affected him personally. Conroy’s father was recently diagnosed with cancer as well.

“These officers know that we support and pray for them,” said Conroy, who has been cancer free for 15 years now. “It’s great to see [Larry Johnson] out here as well. He has spearheaded this effort and we appreciate what he’s doing.”

Johnson stood outside waving to cars with a loudspeaker and megaphone for the event. Johnson said he was more than happy to do it.

Price has worked in Johnson’s district since Johnson took office as a county commissioner.

“Officer Price is just the epitome of community policing for me. I’ve seen his sacrifice and the love he has for his community. This is just a small token on how we can give back as a county. If I have to stand up for three hours, lose my voice, get sweaty and musty, it’s worth it,” Johnson said.

A Go Fund Me account is setup for Price titled, “Darrel (sic) Price fight with cancer fund.” On July 29, the account received 34 donations totaling $1,525. The goal for the page is $7,500.

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