HELENA – Jacob Corpron, an 11-year-old boy from Boulder, is fascinated by law enforcement and hopes to be a police officer. On Friday, his wish came true, thanks to Make-A-Wish Montana, the Helena Police Department and the Lewis and Clark County Sheriff’s Office.
About a dozen HPD officers, including Chief Troy McGee, gathered at the Law Enforcement Center to welcome Jacob. Assistant Chief Steve Hagen declared him an honorary officer and presented him with a full uniform. Jacob even received a motorcycle officer’s helmet.
“We thought that would be a perfect fit – it actually seems to fit him pretty well,” Hagen said. “The motorcycle helmet, police hats and a lot of pins and paraphernalia – we thought that he would appreciate those.”
After that, LCSO Deputy James Turpin took Jacob for a ride-along in a patrol vehicle. He then brought him to the county search and rescue facility, where he got a look at more law enforcement equipment, including the county’s “Bear” armored response vehicle.
“HPD and the sheriff’s office hit it out of the park,” said Rod Austin, a board member with Make-A-Wish Montana. “They went well above and beyond for this one.”
Jacob has Gaucher’s disease, a condition where excess fats build up in a person’s organs, interfering with their function. He currently has to come to Helena once a week for treatment.
Austin said Make-A-Wish Montana started working with Jacob’s family about two months ago.
“This is why we do what we do, to give kids and their families a break from hospital trips and doctors’ visits and really do something that they can enjoy together,” he said. “It means the world to us and everyone on the team.”
Law enforcement officers agreed it’s an honor to help kids like Jacob.
“Our job isn’t always bringing happiness to people, but in this case, I think we made him happy,” Hagen said.
Make-A-Wish Montana has been in operation for more than 30 years. In that time, they’ve granted wishes to about 600 kids around the state. You can learn more about the organization at their website.