Should this have happened?

Hopefully, I can prevent fellow cancer patients with ports from being in the situation I was in a few days ago.


In Barnwell County, a state trooper pulled me over and asked the routine question.


“Do you know why I pulled you over?”


My response was, “I have no idea.”


He stated, “you are not wearing your seat belt.”


I quickly lifted my left arm and showed him he was wrong.


His comeback was, “You are wearing it improperly.”


I agreed with the officer and explained that I was a cancer patient with a surgically implanted intravenous port on my left side. The port prevents me from wearing the seat belt across the shoulder as designed due to irritation of the skin.


After several minutes in his vehicle he came back and handed me a ticket with a fine for seat belt violation. He explained to me that I needed a doctor’s excuse to be wearing the seat belt the way I was wearing it.


It was obvious to me this was a young state trooper who really did know his business. However, understanding the pains of a cancer patient was not one of them. He had no idea that just a year ago, I was told I may only live a couple of years. Also, he had no idea how much pain the port located just above my heart protected me from.


I honestly hope this young man nor his family are ever touched by cancer. If it does happen, he will begin to understand that fining a cancer patient for improperly wearing his seat belt is not high on the list of life’s violations.


If you are a state trooper please pass this around.


What is your opinion? I may be completely wrong.


Dean Ray


Aiken