A local community is rallying around a police officer battling cancer; KDKA's Bryant Reed reports.
- Today a local community is rallying around a police officer battling cancer. They're raising money, but that's not all.
- Bryant Reed is live to explain how they're making sure this officer makes it to retirement. Bryant.
BRYANT REED: Kym, officer Mike Hayes was only about a year away from retirement and a nice pension to go along with it when he was diagnosed with cancer. Of course, he doesn't have that many off days to cover for the missed time for treatment, so his fellow officers are donating their off time.
MIKE HAYES: Off for work one day, and we talked to the other doctor like, you should really go get a CT scan. So we went and had it done, and you know, boom.
BRYANT REED: A 26-year career cut short just before the finish line.
MIKE HAYES: I didn't get that whole like, my last day at work and last day to put the uniform on after all these years awareness. You know like-- I don't know. Just-- It's strange.
BRYANT REED: Officer Mike Hayes of the North Fayette Township Police Department was diagnosed in October with stage four colon cancer that spread to his liver. He was a year and three months away from retirement and earning his pension. When his fellow officers found out, they stepped up big time, donating their time off, so he can make it to the retirement he deserves.
MIKE HAYES: To see what those guys did for me, you know, after being with them for all these years-- You know, they donated some of their time. The whole outpour from the community, seeing how many people just, you know, with how much they care.
BRYANT REED: Officer Hayes was also a resource officer at West Allegheny High School for five years. They, too, are chipping in, selling these t-shirts with the officer's face on them to raise money for his medical expenses.
MIKE SHORT: Well I think he's-- I think he's impacted the community. I think he's made a mark not only on the school, but you know, with friends and family and his coworkers. And you know, they love him.
BRYANT REED: After years of donating his time, attention, and love to the North Fayette community, the community is now supporting him and showing him his hard work hasn't gone unnoticed.
MIKE HAYES: Thank you everybody in the community for being so-- showing so much support. And so much-- how much they care. It's meant a lot. It really has.
BRYANT REED: Officer Hayes now has chemotherapy every 14 days. His wife has battled leukemia, and his son is a type 1 diabetic. But even with all the stress and health issues, the Hayes family says that they're just lucky they have a community to lean on. Live in North Fayette Townshitp, I'm Bryant Reed. KDKA News.