How one girl battling a rare illness became friends with deputies in Colleton County

Local News

COLLETON COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) – It’s a heartwarming story out of Colleton County. A Summerville mom reached out to the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office to inquire about patches that could be sewn into a police-themed blanket.

The blanket was a surprise for her daughter, Victoria, whose dream is to become a police officer with her Husky named Fearless – a crime-fighting canine.

According to the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office, Victoria is battling a rare disease known as Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome which does not have a treatment or cure. The 8-year-old also has other medical complications like Neuronal Migration Disorder and Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome.

When they heard about the request, Colleton County Sheriff’s spokesperson, Shalane Lowes, said they knew they could do so much more for Victoria than just provide patches.

Lowes said they brainstormed ideas that would make Victoria look forward to her stay at the Ronald McDonald House in Boston while she faced tough days ahead.

The department came up with a plan to send her care packages every other week during her stay. Lowes said the department figured being away from family and friends wouldn’t be as tough knowing that you have people back home who are rooting and praying for you.

The packages were filled with sheriff memorabilia from their office and items Victoria admires; like anything pink and purple, everything that sparkles and shines, princess accessories and hand-written letters of encouragement.

Lowes said the sheriff’s office has made a friend for life in Victoria.

She said deputies message her through social media on a regular basis and let her know that they are thinking about her often, they ask how her day is going and say they cannot wait for her to return home.

When Victoria does return to South Carolina in a few months, she will receive the surprise of a lifetime from the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office – Sheriff Strickland will badge Victoria as an honorary canine deputy for a day and she will get to spend the day riding alongside deputies while they teach her all about her dream job.

“People always say that first responders are the unsung heroes of life, but for us it’s children like Victoria who stay strong and fight, making a total effort to overcome the odds that are stacked against them.  Strength from within yourself comes from overcoming the things you thought were impossible.  Life has a way of defying the odds, never give up hope there is always a way,” Said Sheriff Strickland.

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