After battling stage 4 metastatic colon cancer for the better part of the past decade, Union City Police Lt. James Dâ€™Andrea rejoined the force full-time after receiving a clean bill of health last month.
â€œI finished my chemotherapy at the beginning of October and now I see a doctor, but everythingâ€™s good,â€ Dâ€™Andrea told HCV in a sit down interview last week.
â€œItâ€™s a very trying experience for myself and my family and those people around me. I had to take time off from work during treatments. Itâ€™s difficult, the chemotherapy is very exhausting, besides Iâ€™ve had several surgeries to remove the tumors that Iâ€™ve had.â€
A 25-year veteran of the force, Dâ€™Andrea commended his fellow men and women in blue for their continued support in the midst of all the recent turmoil in his life.
That support was on full display Friday evening, where the Union City Fraternal Order of Police honored Dâ€™Andrea with The Courage Award at their annual holiday party.
Dâ€™Andrea hopes that his best days are still ahead, given that he scored number one on the upcoming captainâ€™s test, with two lieutenants expected to be promoted as soon as the end of this week.
â€œCurrently, Iâ€™m number one on the list. The list, they made one captain, initially I was number two, so now I moved up to number one â€¦ hopefully I will be able to get promoted in the near future,â€ he explained.
â€ â€¦ I really appreciate the opportunity for promotion: Iâ€™ve recovered, I feel that I can do the job and that I can serve the department very well, in that capacity, moving up the career ladder.â€
Additionally, a tribute for Dâ€™Andrea created by the UCPD FOP Executive Board NJ 216 can be viewed here.