Effingham Co. comes together for family of 15-year-old boy battling terminal cancer

Effingham Co. comes together for family of 15-year-old boy battling terminal cancer
Published: May. 11, 2017 at 1:12 AM EDT|Updated: May. 11, 2017 at 5:39 PM EDT
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(Source: WTOC)
(Source: WTOC)

EFFINGHAM CO., GA (WTOC) - A county has come together to make a family's dream come true in a matter of days.

Zack Norton just turned 15 and sadly doctors say it could be his last birthday because he's battling terminal cancer. But the community made sure he is still a part of celebrations before it's too late.

Not your typical wedding bells, but the sound of sirens was music to one family's ears.

"The young man, that his mother's getting married today, has terminal cancer. He's been a cancer patient for a while, and one of his dreams was to ride along with the sheriff's office and possibly be in law enforcement," said Effingham County Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie.

Sheriff McDuffie and his deputies made that possibility a reality for Zack, who most likely won't turn 16, but at least he will achieve his dream of becoming a deputy.

"Can you say I do," asked Sheriff McDuffie.

"I do," replied Zack.

"Congratulations buddy, you're an honorary member with the Effingham County Sheriff's Office," replied Sheriff McDuffie.

The sheriff's office role was just the cake topper to the whole wedding plan for Zack's mother that was pulled off in three days.

"On Saturday afternoon, we knew were going to have to get it done quickly because he'd had a really bad weekend," said Laine Moody Bragg, a volunteer from Clyo.

Zack's mom Amber and now husband Toby raced to make their November wedding happen as soon as possible, but the community rallied and made it happen within a week of getting back from cancer treatment.

"The local florist, the photographer, the caterer, everything, the videographer, the DJ, the venue, all this has been donated," Bragg said.

Two dreams realized through the help of the community.

"Very proud, humbling. You realize that people, I mean, this is a work day and you see how many people," said Bragg.

"This is Effingham County; that's what Effingham County does," said Sheriff McDuffie.

The family has set up a GoFundMe account. For those interested in contributing, please click on the link provided here.

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