Cops With Cancer

Supporting Law Enforcement Officers Of Washington State Fighting Cancer

Say It Fight It Cure It - Save Renee Padge

After 21 Years Working to Make a Difference Trooper Renee Padgett Fights for Her Life

Renee Padgett is a 21 year veteran with the Washington State Patrol who was recently diagnosed with a rare and deadly form of cancer. When you ask her why she got into law enforcement she says remembers wanting to be a police officer from a very young age. She fulfilled her lifelong dream in March of 1991 when she became a Trooper. For the past 15 years she has served as the King County State Patrols wrecking yard inspector. She has been so much more to the State Patrol and the community she works in than just a public servant.

Renee is currently assigned to the Commercial Vehicle Division business inspections. Her duties include inspecting licensed wrecking yards in King County and locating illegal wrecking yards and part sales in the county. One of her biggest accomplishments was shutting down Japanese Auto Wrecking. This was a wrecking yard that was dumping gas and other fluids into the ground in Kent. The dumping was so bad that the Federal Government was called in and the location was treated as a super fund cleanup site. After Renee shut that business down the owner moved to Hwy 99 and opened another yard. In the end the owner was arrested and served jail time as well as paid huge fines.

Another one of her accomplishments was a POPS Project called “Curbstoning”. The issue was individual were buying previously wrecked cars from auction and then putting them back together in the least expensive way they could and then sell them to the public who had no idea they were previously wrecked. Some of the cars found had no air bags, had the frames welded together and various other unsafe conditions. The Project created a pamphlet that is in DOL offices and the inspection lanes for VIN verification to warn people about potential curbstoned vehicles. A poster for the Project is hanging in my office.

The Homeward Bound program was started by Renee in 2006 as a Problem Oriented Public Safety (POPS) project. While on maternity leave Renee was driving in traffic and thinking about how terrible it would be to have a missing child. Looking at the blank sides of semi trailers inspired her to begin a POPS project that would add posters of missing children to semi trailers that would increase public awareness of missing children cases. In 2007 the Homeward Bound program was transferred to the Missing and Unidentified Persons Unit as a tool to be used in missing person investigations.

Renee is a very self motivated trooper who loves her job and is very good at what she does. She is very professional and treats people fairly.

Although Renee has a love for working out her first love is by far her two young children. As the mother of Gedeon, 10 years old, and Olivia, 7 years old, Renee has prioritized quality time with family bike rides and hikes to Honey Creek. With her current treatment, life at home is not what it used to be. Gedeon said the thing he misses most are the family bike rides that for now are just not possible. Raising money for treatment will not only help the family get by but bring back the life they love and the activities they miss.

In May of 2012 Renee was diagnosed with a rare cancer called Multiple Myeloma. Multiple myeloma is a cancer of your plasma cells, a type of white blood cell present in your bone marrow.

Renee has always been a role model for others with her active lifestyle. Her work friends are so surprised by this diagnosis. When you tell someone about what’s happening the first thing you always hear is, "How can this be happening? She works out and has always been so healthy."

She was hospitalized from May 17th - June 1st. During that time she had a procedure on her spine called vertebroplasty where they injected cement into 4 of her vertebrae that had collapsed. This was life changing as it virtually took away all of her pain. While in the hospital she began radiation treatment that focused on her spine and an illiac mass behind her right hip. Her treatment will included at least 4 cycles of chemo, 8 radiation treatments, and finally two (2) stem cell transplants.

Renee has reduced kidney function as a result of her condition making her high risk for the upcoming, but life saving treatment. To monitor her progress she will spend up to 3 months in the UW hospital for her first stem cell transplant this fall.

Although we have learned a lot about what will be involved with Renee's treatment, many things are still unknown. We do know that, aside from the changes to her family life, she will have extended time off of work. The total cost for treatment that will not be covered by insurance will be compounded by the loss of income.

Those who wish to assist in the fund raising efforts can safely donate to Renee at By typing Trooper Renee or Renee Padgett into the search you can read current progress in Renee’s condition and help to save her life.

More Birthdays For Renee
The 5k fun run/walk was held Sunday April 21, 2013
Check out some of the pictures

Her Smile Never Ends

 Feb 20, 2015

is with a heavy heart that I write this update. Padgett has relapsed and her Multiple Myeloma is back.

As I updated you all in November, Padgett's T10 vertebrae was fractured and she had the vertebroplasty surgery to fix that. At that time the doctors saw some suspicious "spots" on her vertebrae (specifically C2 & T5) - it was the consensus at that time to do another MRI mid January along with other tests.

Fast forwarding through the holidays, which were fantastic, mid January arrived and Padgett had another MRI - we were told that the suspicious spots are still there and that more had shown up as well. The Oncologist then wanted to do a biopsy of the spine. He was not super concerned because all of Padgett's other labs are good, her kidney functions were the best they have been since diagnosis in 2012 - but we needed to figure out what these "spots" on the spine were. So, they did a biopsy of L5 and the results came back positive for Multiple Myeloma. Showing active disease and 3 tumors.

Next step: do a bone marrow biopsy to see what percentage of Myeloma is in her bone marrow. The bone marrow biopsy was a hard one, and the doctor was only able to retrieve a limited sample - but it would get us the information we needed so it was sent of to pathology. After a very long week of waiting we finally got the results of the bone marrow biopsy - 5%,this is the best news we could have gotten - it means that there is only a low level of disease in the marrow at this point.

What's next - well with the meeting of the minds and the collaborative efforts between Virginia Mason Medical Center and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance the plan is to do radiation and 4 rounds (months) of chemotherapy. Padgett's cancer was very aggressive at its onset in 2012 so they would like to tackle it head on and beat it down as quickly as possible.

Radiation Details:
The radiation cannot take care of all the "spots" (Lytic Lesions) and tumors on her spine and it would be too much to radiate the entire spine - so they are going to focus on 1 of the 3 tumors that is slightly symptomatic and in an area that is more challenging to repair should it collapse or fracture. At the recommendation of the Radiation Oncologist she will undergo 8 rounds of radiation on the C2 vertebrae. C2 is at the base of the skull and both the administration of the radiation and the side effects are quite different from what Padgett had previously in 2012. With the tumor being inside the spine at the location of C2 they have to radiate through the throat; with such a precise spot they had to mold a mask of Padgett's face that she would have to wear and be strapped down with during the administering of the radiation treatments. Biggest side effects: Sore Throat and Fatigue

Chemo Details:
Following radiation we will take a bit of a break before starting the 4 rounds of chemotherapy. The treatment that the doctors suggest is Car-Pom-D - this is pretty high dose chemotherapy
and the hope is it will beat the disease down to 0% and with maintenance chemo they will be able to keep the lid on the cancer and we will not need to discuss the possibility of a stem cell transplant.

I will update more as we move through this journey on a real time basis going forward.

You have ALL been motivational, inspirational and a true blessing through all of this.

To date Padgett has completed the 8 radiation treatments and will begin chemotherapy next week.

Although our hearts are heavy our SPIRIT and FAITH is STRONG. Padgett is a fighter and will not back down.

XOXO Team Padget

We Love You Renee