Officers to overcome obstacles to support stricken colleague
ST. CLOUD, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 ORLANDO) -
Sgt. Boyd Graham served in the military for eight years and has been an officer with the St. Cloud Police Department for 16, but this March, he may have met his worst adversary.
He'd been suffering from aches and pains, so his wife suggested he get checked.
A doctor found a baseball-sized tumor on his liver. He was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and immediately scheduled for surgery.
But it didn't go as planned.
"The surgeon came out and told me while he was still sleeping that they had felt the diaphragm and the abdominal cavity, and they [tumors] were too numerous and too small," said Graham's wife, Claire.
"So he closed him up and said I need to know to get ready to help tell him... how the surgery wasn't going to be successful," Claire said.
"It is seeing the love of my life go through something so hard and being powerless," she said.
The Grahams have two sons -- 12-year-old Luke and 1-year-old Archer. So any amount of extra time is now vital.
"They just have no way of telling us how many months or how many years" are left, Claire said.
During the past few months, Graham has undergone 10 rounds of chemotherapy.
"It is the crippling fatigue. I could be sitting here talking to you and just have to go lay down," Graham said.
His wife has been his savior.
"She has pulled me back from the brink several times. She sells herself short, this woman," Graham said.
Now, the entire St. Cloud Police Department is organizing a heart-racing, sweat-breaking race called the Sgt. Robo Mud Run -- all in Graham's honor.
"They named it the Robo Mud Run because his nickname at the beginning of his tenure here at the police department was 'Robo Cop.' He was by the book and serious," Claire said.
"I call it a rigid personality about him, but one that is idolized by a lot of the young staff," St. Cloud Police Chief Pete Gauntlett said.
The race on June 29 will feature mud slides, ladders, rope swings, trenches and tires to climb. It's an obstacle course for the Graham the other officers know well -- the man they hope will overcome this obstacle, too.
"This is a bad thing, but I can point to more good things that have come from this than I can point to bad things that have come from it," Graham said.
The City of St. Cloud and the St. Cloud Police Department will host the Sgt. Robo Mud Run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 29. The mud obstacle course will benefit Sgt. Boyd Graham. To register, go to Robomudrun.eventbrite.com.