Community support brings retired TPD detective home for treatment

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The family of a retired Tampa police detective got the answer to their prayers Wednesday, when he was able to come home on a medical flight from his home in Puerto Rico.  

The welcome homes were brief, but they were more than enough to bring tears to the eyes of Jose Feliciano.

"It is phenomenal to see him home I'm glad to see him home," said his daughter, Victoria Feliciano.

Feliciano's family watched as his medical flight touched down in Tampa from his home in Puerto Rico.

"This would've never happened without the community and the support they've shown and I thank them from the bottom of my heart," Victoria said.

The retired TDP detective was diagnosed with gastric and colon cancer back in October. He needed $30,000 to make it to Moffitt Cancer Center for treatment.

Thanks to an online-fundraising effort and lots of community support, the family far surpassed its goal.

"We know he's a pillar in the community, but to see how the community was willing to give back to him I think he really felt the appreciate people have," said his niece, Elizabeth Castro.

Feliciano spent much of his career wheeling and dealing as an undercover narcotics officer. He would routinely stare danger square in the eyes. Now, back in the city to which he gave so much, his assignment is to get well.

"He puts everyone first, before himself. I mean, he sacrificed a lot of days, a lot of time, but he did it because he loved to give back to his community," his daughter said.