Knoxville parents thank Boston police for honoring late son

Kolton Hessman before he died. (family)

BOSTON, Mass. (WATE) — Kolton Hessman was just three years old when he died from congenital heart disease in January. The family reached out on social media to share his story in hopes of finding a potential donor. Due to complications, including a hole in one of his lungs and a blood clotting disorder, he became ineligible for a heart transplant.

Kolton loved police. “Everywhere we would go, he’d always pick out law enforcement… he walks right up to them, 3 years old, and then he started taking pictures with them just his personality just shined through” Grant Hessman, Kolton’s father, told WCVB-TV in Boston.

Even though he didn’t have the opportunity to make it onto the force, one police department, about 930 miles away, made sure he would be honored.

“I saw it on Facebook one day having my lunch and it moved me just seeing it” said Boston Police Academy Instructor Kevin Welsh.

Hessman said “They rallied behind it sending it talking it passing it along this kid needs a heart.” Many of the possible donations for Kolton were from the New England area because of this post.

Although his life was cut short, his memory will last a lifetime at the Boston Police Department where his parents received a badge in his honor. A permanent fixture, “Kolton’s Corner,” has also been placed. In appreciation, his family gave every officer at the Boston Police Department a bracelet with his name.

“We’re bonded. And I’m bonded to this city. They’ve rallied behind us since day one and they’ve never stopped” said Hessman.

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