After beating his stage 4 cancer in less than a year, he’s named as Merriam new police chief

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Darren McLaughlin

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MERRIAM, Kan. -- He was told he had terminal cancer.

But now less than a year after his diagnosis, Darren McLaughlin is not only back to the police force, he’s Merriam’s new police chief.

McLaughlin was diagnosed with stage 4 non-Hodgkins lymphoma in January. Doctors told him it was terminal.

But McLaughlin beat the odds and is now cancer free.

He just returned to work this month after a 7-month battle with the disease. He was given a standing ovation as he was announced as police chief Monday night.

"It’s hard to say that getting cancer is a gift. I wouldn’t wish it on anybody, but it actually showed me sometimes you might lose it in the fog, the care and love your family and organization have for you, and I got to experience all that," McLaughlin said.

McLaughlin credits his family and city support with helping him beat terminal cancer, along with modern science.

The chief’s job had been held open for him since April. City Council voted unanimously Monday to name McLaughlin as chief.

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