MERIDIAN -- Hundreds of people from across the community gathered at the Idaho Peace Officers' Memorial on Tuesday night to shine a light in a time of darkness.
The Thin Blue Line Candlelight Vigil was organized to give the community a tangible way to show their support and love for three Boise police officers who were injured in a shootout on Friday while searching for a wanted suspect. Those officers are Cpl. Chris Davis, Cpl. Kevin Holtry, and police K-9 Jardo.
Cpl. Holtry remains in the hospital, as he was shot multiple times by the suspect, 33-year-old Marco Romero. However, on Tuesday night, Boise Police Chief Bill Bones made an unexpected announcement that lifted so many spirits.
Cpl. Holtry is now awake and talking at the hospital. Though he has a long road of recovery ahead, the community has proven that they are behind him.
Boise Police Captain Ron Winegar says Holtry has been on a ventilator in the ICU at Saint Alphonsus in Boise since Friday, but on Tuesday, his breathing tube was removed.
"Even though it's dumping on us and raining right now, it's not dampening anybody's spirits tonight," Capt. Ron Winegar told KTVB. "If there's any way that anybody can come back from the types of injuries he's had, Kevin Holtry is going to be the guy that does it. I have no doubt."
Vigil supports critically wounded Boise officer
Boise Police Chief Bill Bones told the crowd at the vigil that Holtry is not just tough in body; he is tough in mind and spirit.
"There's nobody that I have more faith and confidence in," the chief said.
Boise police updated the crowd on the status of the other officers who were injured in the shootout: Corporal Chris Davis, who was released from the hospital just a day after the shooting, is recovering at home and expected to return to duty soon.
As for the resilient K-9 Jardo, he made an appearance at the vigil putting a smile on everyone's face as they chanted, "Jardo, Jardo, Jardo!"
"He is going to go on light duty," Chief Bones told the crowd. "I've never heard of a dog going on light duty."
One of the organizers, Jacki Briggs, is married to a man who works with the Ada County Sheriff's Office.
"I know that any day he goes out to work, that could happen to my husband," she told KTVB. "I really want to, obviously, be praying for the officers that were injured so that they can just really feel that support and feel those prayers for complete healing and recovery."
Organizers put this event out on Facebook on Sunday, and within just a couple of days hundreds of people caught wind. Before the vigil, Briggs estimated at least 500 people were going to attend.