BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Louisiana State Police hosted an 11-year-old boy and his family from St. Francisville in November for a very special reason. The child has Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), an aggressive form of brain cancer that affects children almost exclusively and claims the lives of 90 percent of its victims within two years of diagnosis.
J.J. made the wish to be a "Trooper for a Day" through the LSP Grant-A-Wish Program.
Dreams Come True, the charitable organization in Louisiana that tries to give every child with catastrophic illness their hearts desires worked out this special day with Louisiana State Police. Troopers have a long-standing commitment to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and Dreams Come True. Troopers continually volunteer to help those causes.
J.J.'s saga began in February 2012 when at age 8, he was diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), an aggressive form of brain cancer that affects children almost exclusively and claims the lives of 90 percent of its victims within two years of diagnosis.
J.J. underwent six weeks of aggressive radiation and a two-year clinical trial with a chemotherapy pill called Crenolanib.
In November, State Police Colonel Mike Edmonson made J.J.'s wish come true and "deputized" him, gave him a trooper's badge to wear and sent him on patrol.
On Friday, J.J. Walker was welcomed on stage by Louisiana State Police Colonel Mike Edmonson during the 93rd State Police Cadet Class graduation.
Colonel Edmonson reconfirmed his commitment to Trooper JJ that an empty chair will be kept on the graduation stage awaiting his full recovery and the fulfillment of his lifelong dream of becoming a Louisiana State Trooper.