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Redmond Police swear in brave 3-year-old boy as honorary officer before latest surgery to remove brain tumor

(Update: Adding video, comments from ceremony)

REDMOND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The Redmond Police Department held an unusual and very special swearing-in Thursday evening at City Hall for their newest officer: 3-year-old Aaron Davenport. And like other, a bit older officers, he's shown great bravery throughout his life, and along with a shiny badge got a round of applause -- and cake!

Asked if he was excited to become a police officer, Aaron said, "Yeah." (The same answer he gave when asked if he liked the specially decorated cake, emblazoned: "Welcome to the team.")

Police Chief Devin Lewis performed the swearing-in ceremony and presented the badge to Aaron's mom, Ashley Davenport, as she held her constantly smiling son in her arms.

"We all appreciate Ashley," Lewis told the crowd. "You know, she's helped out thousands of crime victims throughout Deschutes County ... and it's great to give a little bit back today."

The honorary swearing-in came at a crucial time in Aaron's life, and his family's. A week from now, Aaron is set to undergo his third major surgery, a procedure called a hemispherectomy, in which the diseased half of his brain is completely removed and fully disconnected, or partially disconnected from the normal hemisphere.

Aaron's parents, Ashley and Steve, discovered Aaron had a broken blood vessel in his eye when he was only 6 months old. It was then discovered that he had developed a rare type of brain cancer. Even after undergoing multiple bouts of chemotherapy, Aaron currently suffers from a dozen seizures a day as a part of his ongoing recovery process.

Ashley Davenport, Aaron's mom, says that even though help was always welcomed during Aaron's chemotherapy sessions, it's hard for a family to find help after treatment is over.

"There's not a lot of help for families after they've halted cancer treatment," she said. "So when you experience cancer there's all this support, families rally around you and there's nonprofits and everyone really comes together. But that's just one battle -- and when your fighting cancer, it's a war."

Ashley -- whose day job is directing the Deschutes County District Attorney's Office Victim's Assistance Program -- says even though her son knows what's coming up, he remains as positive as ever about the situation.

"He's aware that he has something coming up. He'll say things like, 'My head hurts.' So he knows we're going to be going to Seattle (for Aaron's surgery) to get that taken care of. But I think the impact and gravity of the situation is something he can't understand."

Even with all of life's obstacles, Aaron has put up a brave fight, amazing his mom and all who have come to know and love him.

"He's having a good time. He loves his school, he loves his friends," Ashley said in a proud-mom moment.

  If you'd like to donate to Aaron's fundraising efforts to offset the cost of his medical bills, you can find the GoFundMe page here - and hear his giggle of happiness, too!

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Blake Mayfield

Blake Mayfield is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Blake here.


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