Bothell boy earns badge of honor

BOTHELL — In the seven years he’s been alive, Lukas Voss has touched many hearts.

The boy spent most of his life fighting a persistent cancer that attacked his spinal cord. He’s braved surgeries and chemotherapy, his mom Lydia Voss said.

In August, Lukas was sworn in as Bothell’s Little Police Chief as part of a state-sponsored program to honor children with life-threatening illnesses.

“These kids are treated to a day of fun,” said Louise Muro, Bothell Police school resource officer. “Just a day to kind of forget what they are going through.”

Participating agencies raise money for their little chiefs. The kids get to look at patrol cars, helicopters and hang out with police dogs, Muro said. Their families get cash cards for gas stations and grocery stores.

A single mother of two young boys, Voss lives in Kenmore. She is a reading specialist at Crystal Springs Elementary, where Lukas is a first-grader and Muro is a school resource officer.

That’s where they met, Muro said.

“I always call Lydia the rock star mom. Her kids are absolutely first and foremost,” she said.

Lukas loved being the city’s little chief, Voss said. Meeting new people and touring the police station was his favorite part.

“Every time somebody calls him ‘chief’ he puts his little fists on his hips like he’s a superhero,” she laughed.

Lukas’ brain, social skills and behavior have all been affected by his tumor, Voss said. It’s hard for him to be in public and not be judged. “To be around people who understand and accept him for who he is, it feels good,” Voss said.

It’s been tough, but there’s always been help, Voss said.

“It’s amazing to have that support, but at the same time it’s a reminder of why I have that support,” she said. “I’m trying to live day by day … making Luke’s life the best it can possibly be.”

Katya Yefimova: 425-339-3452,

You can help

The Bothell Police Department is raising money to replace the family’s broken van. To help, donate to the Chief Lukas Voss Fund at any Washington Mutual or Chase Bank branch.

If you are a local car dealership willing to help, contact Sgt. Clint Beck or officer Louise Muro at 425-487-5144.

To learn more about Lukas, go to

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