Community rallies around Virginia Beach police detective battling stage four cancer


A Virginia Beach police officer gives his best to the community every day, while fighting the battle of his life.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – “It’s been a crazy trip,” said Virginia Beach Police Detective Kurtis Vogel.

Nine years ago, Detective Vogel fulfilled a lifelong dream when he joined the Virginia Beach Police Department.

“My dad actually told me, ‘don’t go into law enforcement,'” Vogel said. “He’s a retired cop, but I decided to go against everything he said. It’s just something I’ve always wanted to do.

Kurtis’ wife, Brianne Vogel, was supportive of his career choice and tried to look past the dangers of the police.

They have two young children together.

“It’s tough,” Brianne said. “He’s coming home safe and the kids are super proud that their dad is a police officer.”

Kurtis’ biggest scare came in May 2021.

“He went for a colonoscopy and they found a tumor,” Brianne said.

A doctor diagnosed Kurtis with stage four colorectal cancer at the age of 36.

“They put his port in and he was on chemo a few weeks later,” Brianne said. “He finished that, had surgery and removed the tumor.”

Then things took a turn. The cancer has spread to Kurtis’ liver. Now, every two weeks, Kurtis and Brianne travel three hours for treatment in North Carolina. Yet he puts on his badge day after day and goes out to protect his community.

“I love what I do. I love who I work with,” Vogel said.

He said work is a healthy distraction from his treatment.

His dedication was noticed by the community. Many wishes of happiness and food donations were received.

In addition to food and wishes, Kurtis’ close friend and co-worker created a GoFundMe for him.

As of Thursday, GoFundMe had raised over $10,000 of its $30,000 goal

Kurtis’ gratitude for this support system is something he struggles to put into words.

“I can’t thank everyone honestly enough,” Vogel said. “The support has been more than I expected. I never did, thought or wanted anything in return, but people really stepped up and showed who they were.

Kurtis said he had no family history of cancer.

“I’ve never been sick,” Vogel said. “I wasn’t sick when they diagnosed me.”

He hopes sharing his struggle will inspire others to see their doctor regularly.

“Get checked out,” Vogel said. “There were symptoms that were sort of overlooked – albeit very minor – that I think if I had had them checked out I might have identified earlier.”

Kurtis’ co-worker is hosting a fundraiser for a golf tournament in his honor on June 12.


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