"This man has been a servant all his law enforcement life. Hopefully we can give something back to him, because he is in need," Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd says.
Friends of Frank Butler say his days are numbered, and they need your help to make the last few, the best. Last June, Frank was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphatic cancer. He's battled the terminal disease for the past 11 months, living in his FEMA trailer.
"I think it was within a week of them starting to build the house that he was diagnosed with cancer," Butler's friend L.C. Drawdy says.
His chemotherapy treatments made Frank too weak to finish rebuilding his home, so dozens of volunteers are continuing his work. For the past 8 weeks, Butler hasn't left his hospital bed in Tampa, Florida. Now, friends say his final wish is to come home.
"I think once he comes home and realizes the house is done, he'll have a peace that it's complete, that he won't have concerns or worries. He'll know his family is taken care and provided for," Drawdy says.
Sheriff Mike Byrd says Frank has a difficult trip to make before he can enjoy the new paint and furniture.
"We're going to try to get him airlifted back here to his house Thursday. He's just too weak to ride in an automobile, so we're trying to get him here so he can see his home," Byrd says.
The airfare alone will cost $4,000, a bill his friends want to have paid off by Thursday. Even though time for Frank is precious, every second with those who love him will mean the world.
"Stop and think, if you were separated from your family. What would you want someone to do, and what would you be willing to do, to know that you could be reunited with your family the last couple weeks you have. Making those last memories that need to be made, in the lives of the children, as well as the spouse," Drawdy says.
If you would like to help Frank Butler's family and friends, they've set up a fund. Contact any Merchants and Marine Bank, for the "Frank Butler Benefit." Again, they're trying to fly him home Thursday, so they need your help right away.