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Petersburg officer fighting breast cancer struggling to pay bills for injured dog

Leslie Deluca
Posted at 4:30 PM, Dec 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-29 18:01:44-05

PETERSBURG, Va. -- Leslie Deluca is a fighter with a won't give up attitude. She is also a Petersburg Police officer fighting cancer.

Back in May of 2020, Officer Deluca wasn't just fighting crime but also fighting for her life.

"Stage 4. It's metastatic breast cancer," Deluca said.

Now 19 months later, she hasn't given up hope.

"There's no reason to give up. I mean, going to work every day gives me purpose, being in connection with the community, helping the community gives you purpose," Deluca said.

She's also beginning another round of treatment for cancer.

"It's gonna try to help stop the cancer from spreading and hopefully start shrinking some of the tumors," Deluca said.

Her desk duty came in October after her last treatment took its toll on her.

"I thought it was the right thing to do," Chief Travis Christian with the Petersburg Police said.

Now, she is preparing to return to patrolling the streets of Petersburg.

However, she's not just battling cancer nowadays.

Financially, she is drained. And her emotional support at home, her two rescue dogs, are fighting their own medical battle. One is in need of surgery.

"She's torn one of her cruciate ligaments and it's a painful surgery," Dr. Stacy Riddle with the Colonial Heights Veterinarian Hospital said.

The procedure's not only painful but also quite expensive, costing several thousand dollars.

"Pets are really important for people's mental and physical health when they're battling something like this so this is an important cause for us," Dr. Riddle said.

"They mean everything. They give me support, emotional support and that's what you need when you're in this position when you go home you get that unconditional love from the puppies," Officer Deluca said.

Dr. Riddle said Colonial Heights Veterinary Hospital has discounted the surgery but there are still expenses

With Officer DeLuca's out-of-pocket medical expenses and living expenses, she doesn't have any extra money for her dog's surgery.

You can help her out by donating to her GoFundMe.