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Queens Chronicle

Coast Guard fulfills young boy’s dream

A Middle Village youngster battling cancer gets a surprise chopper tour

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Posted: Thursday, March 27, 2014 10:30 am

That buzzing, whirling sound you may have heard in the vicinity of Juniper Valley Park in Middle Village on Monday was the sound of a young boy’s dream coming true.

Surrounded by his family and officers from the 104th Precinct, nine-year-old Middle Village youngster Colin Flood, who is battling acute lymphocytic leukemia for the second time in two years, was surprised by a visit from a U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City helicopter crew.

According to a Coast Guard press release, some of Colin’s favorite shows include Coast Guard Alaska and Deadliest Catch, which feature daring helicopter rescues, and one of his dreams has always been to spend time in a Coast Guard chopper.

So on Monday, the NYPD and FDNY closed the park to allow the helicopter to land safely and Colin to explore the aircraft.

The crew gave the youngster a tour of the helicopter and presented him with a picture of the chopper signed by the crew, in addition to a Coast Guard hat, shirt, unit patches and a name tag with Colin’s name on it.

Coast Guard Investigative Services Special Agent John Keeley, who coordinated the event between the military branch, FDNY, NYPD and the Parks Department, said it was a thrill to help Colin live one of his dreams.

“It meant a lot to us to see the happiness on Colin’s face,” Keeley said, “and to be able to fulfill his dream to see a Coast Guard helicopter up close and personal.”

Colin was originally diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia on Christmas Eve 2011 and has endured bouts of chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant to defeat the disease a first time.

In early 2012, Colin’s story captivated the community and hundreds of people even came out to a bone marrow donor drive.

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