Long-time LPD officer John Barber battling Stage 4 cancer

Published: May. 22, 2023 at 7:29 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Officer John Barber has served and protected Lubbock for decades, spending the last 16 years with LPD and five months with a dreadful cancer diagnosis.

“I have been with LPD since January 2004, I had been out of law enforcement for a few years when 9/11 happened, and that inspired me to get back into it,” said Barber.

Barber has had quite a career in law enforcement. He has served on the force at the Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office and the Texas Tech Police Department. He is currently on mounted patrol for the Lubbock Police Department. However, in January of this year, a routine check-up led to devastating news.

“I do have Stage 4 metastatic prostate cancer that has spread throughout my body, all over,” Barber said.

After the sting of the news faded, Barber started treatment and began traveling back and forth to MD-Anderson in Houston. Barber was recently accepted into an experimental treatment that will require him to take a lot of time off of work. Barber’s best friend Mike Irby decided Barber could not do it alone.

“If he wasn’t here, we would be losing a teacher and instructor, for sure a mentor, for the younger guys and newer guys coming in,” said Irby.

Irby was determined to find a way to help Barber stay on top of his medical expenses.

“Mike was one of the first people to step up and say we are going to put together something, to have a fundraiser for you, which turns out to be this golf tournament,” said Barber.

For Irby, involving the community that Barber has served for the last 16 years is only right.

“He has served the community, maybe it’s time for them to help give back and help him out,” said Irby.

Barber said seeing Lubbock rally around him gives him hope to fight through the uncertainty that comes with Stage 4 cancer.

“Our job focuses on the bad side of people often times, and so this has been a great reminder of how kind and generous people are,” said Barber.

Registration for the Back the Blue golf tournament benefitting John Barber ends on June 4th. For more information on registering a team or sponsorship please visit https://bootsandbadges.org/pages/john-barber-golf-tournamen.