CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - A veteran Hamilton County deputy sheriff lost his battle with advanced pancreatic and liver cancers Friday.
Michael Ware was with the sheriff's office more than 20 years.
Deputy Ware received his devastating diagnosis just under a year ago, in September 2017.
He was recovering from back surgery and due to return to work patrolling Lincoln Heights. But stomach pain prompted a trip to the emergency room that ultimately resulted in chemotherapy and multiple hospital trips.
Pancreatic cancer is one of the more deadly cancers because by the time it is diagnosed, it is in advanced stages.
Deputy Ware loved his job and felt he made a difference in the community he served.
He packed his final year with as many joys as he could. That included marrying his longtime girlfriend, Kimberly.
Together, the couple have been raising four children.
The law enforcement community has been rallying around Ware and two other law enforcement veterans battling Stage 4 cancer, Deputy Tony Kelly and Harrison Officer Marvin Gambill.
A sold-out crowd of more than 1,000 people packed a benefit in December for the three.
Proceeds raised at "Benefit for Blue Against Cancer" were divided among them to help with their mounting medical costs.
The outpouring of support overwhelmed and touched all three men.
At one point, Gambill - who also is suffering from Stage 4 pancreatic and liver cancer - wiped tears rolling down his cheeks as he watched the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office Pipe & Drum Corps play in a ceremony that kicked off the event.
"This is great," Ware said in an interview with FOX19 NOW that night. "All these people here for the support is just wonderful."
A Go Fund Me page remains up to help with Ware's medical costs.
So far the "Ware Strong Fund" has raised $9,685 toward a $20,000 goal.
In his final Facebook post on the "Ware Strong" page, Deputy Ware valiantly faced the camera with tears in his eyes as he took a selfie.
"... I'm basically in bed, door closed, segregated from the kids(Kim is an absolute Angel taking care of me, getting my Spirits back up, forcing me to laugh at the absurdity of being MAD at my sense of helplessness).
"This Sucks, but it's part of the Cost toward getting Better and Defeating the cancer. I truly love you all and want you to know I WILL Overcome."
Service details have not been announced yet, but they will be held in Logan, which is about 48 miles southeast of Columbus, according to the sheriff's office.