‘We missed him truly in our hearts’: Community welcomes home local officer after cancer battle

Published: Jun. 17, 2021 at 7:00 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 17, 2021 at 7:51 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - It’s welcome home for a local hero. Check out the streets today as friends, family, and neighbors lined the streets with signs and flags to welcome home a North Augusta officer.

Sergeant Andy Cook has been with North Augusta Public Safety for two decades. And for the last two months he’s been in the hospital fighting cancer.

The community rallied to see Sgt. Cook come home from the hospital. We saw around 50 people come out and line the streets. Some even holding up this sign saying ”Andy we love you.” Just a testament to how strong this community is.

A police escort was fitting after a long two months waiting for Sgt. Andy Cook to finally return home.

“We missed him, truly in our hearts. We missed that everyday where the police car officer passed here everyday,” said Joyce Carnes.

Joyce Carnes is a neighbor down the street and says he’s made an impact on almost everyone in the neighborhood. And our community.

“He’s a very kind and sociable person and he’s very nice and every time he passes by he waves at us and he smiles at us and we feel protected,” said Carnes.

Everyone lined the streets holding signs, waving flags, and sharing stories about Andy Cook. It was enough to bring tears to those close to him.

“Oh man I was just excited I almost came to tears. I had to hold them back. I was so thankful that God heard our prayers,” said Paul Noe, Pastor at Sweetwater Baptist Church.

Those prayers and support have been happening for months. Your Pie, Diablos, the Pot Smoker BBQ all having fundraisers to help raise money for the family.

“We’re just so grateful for all that came out to support us in this endeavor. We just wanted to let him know we love him and that we’re so proud that he’s able to come home now and rejoice with his family,” said Pastor Noe.

Neighbors say they look forward to seeing Sgt. Cook riding down the street and smiling again and shared one message.

“We love Andy and love his family and want to tell him how much we appreciate him,” said Pastor Noe.

“Please. I’m praying and we’re just praying to God that Andy will come back,” said Carnes.

The best part about all of this is the family says Sergeant Cook was able to come home in time to make this an early Father’s Day gift for his two daughters.

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