BROOKLYN PARK, Minn. (KMSP) - When police squad cars come racing down your street early in the morning it's usually not a good sign, but this time it was. Six Brooklyn Park police officers woke up the neighborhood on Thursday to surprise a 14-year-old battling leukemia on her birthday.
Sirens were blaring and officers even temporarily shut down part of the street. Armed with flowers, balloons, and all sorts of gifts, officer Sarah Suerth personally reached out to the family after learning about Ashley Calhoun's challenging situation.
“I think it was just exciting to be able to make a day special for her, for somebody who doesn't know what tomorrow's going to bring,” Suerth said.
When Ashley was just 7 years old, she was diagnosed with leukemia. And with a cleft palette, speaking isn’t easy. Doctors treated this form of bone marrow cancer with chemotherapy, and it went away for a few years then came back when she was 10, and reappeared for the third time last year.
“It's an everyday part of life now,” Ashley said.
Complicating matters, her dad Jay is unemployed and raising Ashley and her three siblings on his own. So when unexpected moments like this happen, Ashley said it gives her more hope.
"It makes us forget everything, it makes us just say, ahh what a community,” her dad Jay Calhoun said.
Brooklyn Park Police Department also made Ashley an honorary officer for the day.