Police, veterans and more gather to carol to terminally ill Roanoke veteran

Dozens surprised veteran Steve Goodwin Thursday evening

By Lindsey Ward - Anchor

ROANOKE, Va. - A terminally ill veteran is bound to his home this season and his friends and family brought him some Christmas spirit.

Dozens of New Freedom Farm volunteers, police officers and friends surprised Steve Goodwin Thursday night at his home.

New Freedom Farm is a  retreat for Steve and other veterans like him.

It's an effort to show him love and support through song. 

All is not calm, but it is bright.

Blue lights signaled something was happening outside Goodwin's house.

Carolers followed the cruisers as Goodwin made his way outside to see what was happening.

The lawn filled up with New Freedom Farm volunteers, Roanoke and Salem police officers and even miniature horses.

Everyone was there to spread Christmas cheer by singing loud for Goodwin to hear. 

"I did this because Steve is one of my best, best friends," said New Freedom Farm founder Lois Fritz. 

For several weeks now, he hasn't been able to leave his home as he battles terminal lung cancer.

In this busy season, Fritz had no problem asking "oh come, all ye faithful friends." 

"Everyone said they were going to come. Our volunteers start from age 4 all the way up to age 92 and everyone came and we brought the farm to him," said Fritz.

"These are my people, vets and New Freedom Farm. It means so much," said Goodwin. 

Officer Joel Kulish met Goodwin on the farm and jumped at the opportunity to offer Roanoke city's help. 

"It's a brotherhood not only for the police department but veterans as well. From veteran to veteran, two generations of warriors, you still find a way to connect; no matter what the age gap is, you just find a way to become like family," said Kulish.

And family is worth celebrating, even if it causes a little commotion on a silent night.  

"One police car, I got curious, and then when I saw it was three I thought something's up. It was two Roanoke City, and one Salem. And then JT got out of the car I said, 'All right, somebody's up to something here,'" said Goodwin. 

The jig is up and the crowd is jingling all the way. 

"I love them so much and they know it, they know it. It means so much to me," said Goodwin. 

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