Community shows love for Tom Drennan in fight against cancer

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 12 May 2021 at 9:49 pm

‘He has a great heart and he would help anyone’

Photos by Tom Rivers

KENDALL – About 200 T-shirts were distributed this evening to show support for Tom Drennan, a retired chief deputy of the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office and longtime Kendall firefighter.

Drennan was recently diagnosed with multiple myeloma and has completed two rounds of chemotherapy. He is awaiting a stem cell transplant and then faces more chemotherapy.

His friends – Steve Cooley, left, and Chris and Stacey Seefeldt – handed out the T-shirts this evening from the Kendall Elementary School parking lot.

Drennan is well-liked, especially in the Kendall community.

“Tom has been a great guy with the Fire Department and he was a great cop,” said Nathan Loescher, who was among the crowd who paid for a shirt as a fundraiser. “He has a great heart and he would help anyone.”

Loescher said he appreciated when the Kendall community rallied for his mother, when she had pancreatic cancer about five years ago. About 500 chicken barbecue dinners were sold to help her with her medical bills. “It was a huge help,” he said.

Kristen Ferris of Carlton also has felt the community support when there was cancer in her family. She wanted to help the Drennan family, and said Drennan has been a family friend her entire life.

The T-shirts include Drennan’s badge number of 145 on the front and the message “Team Drennan – You got this” on the back.

Besides the T-shirts, there was a basket raffle with the items sold with an auction through Facebook.

Chris and Stacey Seefeldt led the fundraising efforts, and managed to keep it a secret from the Drennans through a closed Facebook group.

The two families often go camping together, but that has been put off this year.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Prest

About 50 people walked from the school to Drennan’s home and surprised Tom and his wife Terri. They were presented with a check for about $11,000. A Kendall fire truck led the processional to the Drennan home.

People were eager to help the family while Drennan is off from working with Ludwick Paving & Concrete.

Terri Drennan, who works as the crime victims unit coordinator in Orleans County, posted on Facebook, thanking everyone for sending love, prayers and positivity.

“Finding out ALL OF YOU are supporting Tom’s journey means more than you can ever imagine…shirts, donations, baskets, cards, kind words…there is no way saying thank you can begin to capture how overwhelmed we are and how full our hearts are,” she said.