Deputies, firemen escort Abby Keating to hospital treatment

Published 9:53 am Monday, December 11, 2017

By Dwight Sparks

The Clemmons Courier

For a minute, everything came to a standstill on busy Lewisville-Clemmons Road on Friday morning as Forsyth deputies and Clemmons firefighters escorted a 2-year-old to the hospital for a final but very difficult round of treatment for leukemia.

A princess or king wouldn’t have received more gracious treatment.

Deputies led the car of Michelle and Ty Keating from their home in Clemmons West to Chick-fil-A for a complimentary breakfast on their way out of town.

Council members Mike Rogers and Lanny Farmer — wearing natty pink shirts because that’s Abby’s favorite color — met the Keatings with coffee and breakfast to go. They are part of “Abby’s Army” to help the family during its struggle.

Chick-fil-A’s Jonathan Lotz, who successfully battled cancer when he was a child, prayed with the family and told them he never knew why he had cancer, but he was glad he could use that experience to encourage the Keatings. His mother, Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of evangelist Billy Graham, wrote a book about trials in her life, including her son’s illness. The Keatings received a copy of that book on their way to the hospital last week.

Michelle Keating fought back tears as she thanked the community for its love.

Forsyth deputies J.M. Boysel and Sgt. G.R. Goodrich presented Abby with a deputy bear they carry in their patrol cars.

With that, they were whisked away as firetrucks briefly blocked Lewisville-Clemmons Road long enough for the Keatings to drive away.

Abby was the guest of honor for the lighting of the Clemmons Christmas tree last week, and the family took her to the Tanglewood Festival of Lights that night.

Ty Keating said he is eager to return his daughter home from the hospital by Christmas, putting leukemia behind her forever.