A Lake in the Hills police officer with 20 years of service, who is a father of four kids, says he will no longer be able to work as he battles a rare blood cancer, and a fundraiser has been started for him.
Mike Domagala began his law enforcement career in Fox River Grove in 2002. He was hired by the Lake in the Hills Police Department in 2012.
Domagala, 43, was diagnosed in July with multiple myeloma, which is a rare blood cancer that is not curable but is treatable.
According to the Mayo Clinic, cancerous plasma cells accumulate in the bone marrow and crowd out healthy blood cells. The cancer cells produce abnormal proteins that can cause complications.
Domagala is married and has four children, ages 5, 12, 16, and 23. At the onset of the cancer discovery, he had to have a pelvic biopsy, two bone marrow biopsies, blood work, PET scans, CT scans, and MRIs, according to a GoFundMe account.
Domagala has undergone multiple cycles of chemotherapy that started on August 4 and then a stem cell transplant in December.
He has not been able to patrol as an officer since his diagnosis. On March 25, Domagala said in an update that he had his 100-day post bone marrow appointment, which went well.
“I also had my hematologist appointment for my maintenance therapy which will be a chemo pill every day and a bone healing transfusion once a month. The overwhelming support my family and I have received through this has been amazing and helps me continue to fight through this difficult time,” he said.
Domagala said in February that he was optimistic about getting back to work. However, he said in his March 25 update that his doctor told him he would not be able to return to working the streets as a police officer.
“I have been a police officer for almost 20 years and have always wanted to be since I was a child. I have no idea what I am going to do but I will figure it out as this is still sinking in,” he said.
Fellow police officer Erik Watters started a GoFundMe account for Domagala in November and it continues to bring in donations from the public.
The fundraiser money is going towards uncovered medical expenses, travel expenses for treatments and to help his family with everyday expenses.
“Mike maintains a strong fighting spirit and finds his strength in his love for his family. Mike’s greatest concern is in continuing to provide for his family while he covers all of his uncovered medical expenses,” Watter said.
The GoFundMe has a $50,000 goal and has raised $28,800 so far as of Thursday.