Chief McLaughlin in Remission from Lymphoma
Courage. Sacrifice. Compassion. Those three words – the mantra of the Merriam Police Department – never meant so much to Chief Darren McLaughlin as they do now.
The 30-year veteran was one of two Merriam police officers who was told he had cancer in January. Switching from fighting crime to fighting lymphoma, Chief McLaughlin said it was tough being away from the Merriam men and women in blue.
“It was very hard to be away for seven months,” Chief McLaughlin said. “The illness happened so fast, and I really had no time to prepare myself for the journey I was about to take. One day I’m at work, the next day I’m gone. The hard part was that I didn’t know for so long if I would make it back or not.”
After months of chemo and other cancer treatments, Chief McLaughlin is back in action. He said he’s again ready to serve Merriam residents and lead the 37-member police department.
“Becoming chief has been a goal of mine for many years,” Chief McLaughlin said. “My desire to lead this department has only gotten stronger during my illness. I’m so proud of how my coworkers handled themselves this year.”
“Everyone in the police department missed him and is excited to have him back,”said former acting Police Chief Todd Allen. “His leadership and vision will be a huge asset to the Merriam Police Department moving forward.”
Chief McLaughlin said his wife, Mindy, and children, Kyle and Grace, helped keep things in perspective for him throughout his cancer treatments. He said he’s grateful for them and is also humbled and appreciative of the City of Merriam and its residents.
“The support I received from city staff, my coworkers, and members of the public were overwhelming,” Chief McLaughlin said. “The only way I could pay this kindness and love forward was to get back to the department and community that means so much to me.”
Come welcome back Chief McLaughlin at National Coffee with a Cop Day at the Merriam Police Department on Oct. 2 from 9-11 a.m. He wants to express his thanks to you!
Chief McLaughlin getting pinned by his wife and children.
Mayor Ken Sissom congratulates Chief McLaughlin.