Police armada surprises boy battling cancer
11-year-old Noah Gochanou couldn’t stop smiling Saturday after he was surprised by a full police and fire task force at his home.
Sterling Heights – Noah Gochanou couldn’t stop smiling Saturday after he was surprised by a full police and fire task force at his home.
Officer Dustin Leak and Chief Dale Dwojakowski knocked on Noah’s door recruiting him into their department. Soon, more than 40 emergency response vehicles from eight departments in Macomb County, including SWAT and animal control, road down Kristen Drive when he called for back up.
“It’s so cool, I really like the fire truck and have a police hat,” Noah said.
Noah, 11, has been fighting Ewing's Sarcoma, a rare cancer that grows in bones or cartilage and nerves, since 2014.
Sara Gochanour, Noah’s mother, said when they were contacted by Shields of Hope, a Michigan nonprofit that spreads joy to those affected by cancer, she never expected such a large turnout.
“There was a big crash down Van Dyke so I thought there would be five cars here...I can’t believe how many showed up. It’s amazing,” said Gochanour.
Noah became an honorary member of Macomb County SWAT team, received a patch and a challenge coin after pulling the horn on fire trucks and climbing up the armored SWAT van. Neighbors were initially startled by the large scene but soon joined in to see Noah tour the vehicles.
“It took about two weeks to plan and get together but after we heard his story, we knew we had to do something special for him,” said Officer Leak. “We all collectively raised money to help him on his wish list.”
Gochanour said Noah started complaining his shoulder was sore and one day while getting dressed for school, he could no longer raise his arm. Two days after Noah turned 8, he was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma, had the tumor removed from his shoulder blade and started chemotherapy.
“Chemotherapy every other week until June 2015 when Noah was declared no evidence of disease!! We thought it was over! All his doctors were very optimistic and we had his mediport removed and no check up scans for 3 months! WOO HOO RIGHT? Nope... we were wrong again!” Gochanour wrote on the Noah’s GoFundMe page.
In September 2015, Noah’s first CT recheck showed that his cancer not only returned but had spread to his lungs and he was given a 7 percent chance of surviving five more years. He underwent ICE chemotherapy, which had a 55 percent chance would kill him, and was cleared of lung tumors until he was re-diagnosed on Sept. 30, 2016 with 12 new nodules in his lungs.
“There’s no more treatments out that could save him so we decided to do a chemo regimen to slow down the growth which worked for 13 months but now the cancer is growing again. As of right now Noah has decided that he doesn’t want to do any treatment so we are going to try to enjoy life, have adventures and make memories,” Gochanour wrote.
Noah created a wish list of things he wanted to do to make the most of his life including, going to Hollywood, meeting rappers Flo Rida and Eminem, drive, go to Cedar Point and Six Flags, have a horse and give his mom an awesome birthday.