State troopers give local boy an 11th birthday to remember


Since he was 7, Taylor Treadway has wanted to become an Indiana State Police trooper.

Monday was his 11th birthday, and his dream occupation remains the same.

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Celebrating his birthday this year with family and friends, however, wasn’t possible because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thanks to seven local state police officers, Taylor had a birthday he won’t soon forget.

At noon Saturday, as he stood outside his home east of Brownstown, the state troopers paraded by with sirens blaring and lights flashing.

Led by Sgt. Stephen Wheeles, the parade also included troopers Tia Hunt, Jason Hankins, David Owsley, Korry Clark, Austin Straub and Randel Miller and his K-9, Jinx.

“The parade down State Road 250 in Brownstown with sirens and lights loud and bright gave Taylor a hero’s parade for his 11th birthday,” said his father, Kenny Treadway.

Kenny got to know Wheeles through their sons playing baseball and football together the last four years.

“Reaching out to him on short notice, he didn’t waver to help in my request to bring Taylor a little surprise,” Kenny said. “Sgt. Wheeles not only is an amazing Indiana State Police trooper, he is an even greater man, father and role model to many in our community.”

The past two years, Taylor had a party with the same three school friends: Hunter Toppe, Brady Hallow and Brody Stuckwisch.

This year, though, schools have been out since March because of the virus pandemic and will continue with eLearning through early May, and people have been asked to practice social distancing by staying 6 feet apart and not gather in groups of more than 10.

“This year, obviously, we could not continue that tradition, which was a little sad for Taylor until exactly noon before the rain came,” Kenny said.

That’s when Wheeles and the troopers saved the day, Kenny said.

“Taylor and I are beyond thankful to all the officers, including K-9 officer Jinx, for the time they all took from their busy schedules to make a birthday even brighter,” Kenny said. “Taylor’s 11th birthday was one I know we will never forget and will forever hold a memorable place in both our hearts.”

Taylor and his father thank all police officers for protecting the safety and well-being of everyone.

“Saturday hopefully continued to show him that being an officer is one of the greatest callings any of us could ever choose to do as it is truly evident in our lives, especially in the year 2020,” Kenny said.