Officer Michael Brazil is truly a gem in our community. As a veteran, a police officer, a law student, a father, a husband, and an advocate for bringing awareness and support for those effected by Rhett’s Syndrome, he does it all.
Having grown up in Hobart and attending Hobart High School, Brazil began his passion for helping others right away. At 18 he was enlisted in the Army Reserves where he served for nine years and eventually met his wife Rachel while stationed in Cuba. After retiring from the Army, Officer Brazil and his wife moved to Valparaiso where he was able to complete his degree in accounting before starting his next step as a Crown Point Police officer, where he has served now for eight years.
Brazil decided a few years ago that he wanted to go on to obtain a higher degree, and after much thought and consideration, he applied to the distinguished Valparaiso Law School where he is now on his second year as a student. He has been juggling a full time career, school, and his family but he says that he one day hopes to, "establish his own practice where he will focus on family law with an emphasis on special needs advocacy”.
The Brazil family found out last year that their youngest Emberly had been diagnosed with Rhett’s Syndrome. They immediately started working on finding the best help and resources for their daughter. They have become actively involved in helping to raise awareness and support and have found wonderful resources to ensure that their daughter was getting everything she would need.
While none of this has been easy for the family, they have leaned on each other through the tough times and have been an encouragement to so many out there. The strength and love they have shown for each other and their children is nothing less than admirable. Brazil says that, “The community has been a huge support from the start”.
They have had two fundraisers over the past year for their daughter which raised enough money for much of the equipment that insurance does not cover. They have become actively involved in the organization Girl Power to Cure and have participated in the Rhett’s Awareness Day event in Crown Point where police officers help girls as they make the journey up the Old Courthouse steps.
The Brazils, who recently moved to Crown Point, are enjoying their new area. Brazil said, “We love the events they have downtown, the friendliness, the atmosphere, and especially how the community has embraced us with their support for our family and our fundraising efforts”.
Brazil is truly showing us how important it is to not only be actively involved in your community but how much community support matters to families.