Paterson PD gives dog to girl with rare brain tumor

Posted: Updated:
PATERSON -

A 6-year-old girl with a rare brain tumor received a furry surprise from the Paterson Police Department.

Lyana Stevens suffers from diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), highly aggressive and difficult to treat brain tumors found at the base of the brain.

The Stevens family says that Lyana’s chemotherapy and radiation treatments are no longer available in America. This prompted her parents to seek treatment in Mexico.

When the Paterson Police Department found on out about Lyana’s story, they stepped in to bring the family some joy this holiday season.

"One of the relatives gave me a letter to read…the letter just broke my heart. It ripped me apart,” says Paterson Chief Animal Control Officer John DeCando. “So I just came up with this idea that a therapy dog may be able to help the child.”

DeCando says that he hopes that the dog brings health and happiness to Lyana and her twin brother.

The Stevens family has created a crowdfunding page for Lyana’s treatment in Mexico. Over $24,000 has been raised.

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