TWIN FALLS, Idaho — An Idaho State Trooper is "making remarkable progress" on his recovery after he was hit by a car over a week ago on Interstate 84 in Jerome County.
Sergeant Mike Wendler was critically injured in the incident and has been recovering at the Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center ICU. According to a Facebook post from Idaho State Police (ISP), he was recently moved out of ICU and can now walk short distances.
"As an agency, the Idaho State Police is overwhelmed and humbled by the outpouring of support we have received on behalf of Sgt Wendler and his family," a post from ISP on Facebook said. "We know it is in part, due to the caliber of men and women who serve with us, like Sgt Wendler. But we also know it is because of the kind of people we serve here in Idaho. Stepping in to help and support each other is ingrained into who we are as individuals, agencies, and communities. Nearly every day, when people in towns across our state stop to ask our troopers how Sgt Wendler is doing, it reconfirms how fortunate we are to serve the people of Idaho."
Family and members of the Idaho State Police Department have also been a great source of support for Sgt Wendler on his way to recovery. Other local law enforcement agencies stepped up to help as well, by providing support to ISP and Sgt Wendler's family,
One day after Sgt Wendler was injured, Colonel Kedrick Wills said in a Facebook post: “We are profoundly humbled by the outpouring of support we received from the people of our great state. It has reinforced our belief that Idaho is truly a great place to live and serve."
KTVB received an update on Wendler’s condition on Monday, September 12 from his verified GoFundMe page, that he is showing positive signs of recovery, with some medical devices being removed and doctors now focusing on physical injuries.
"This morning his wife Amy, family and friends were greeted with Mike's smile, and he recognized every person in the room and is able to hold short conversations with each one," said ISP trooper Mike Hausauer. "He is aware of his surroundings and is giving hugs and fist bumps. His vital signs continue to improve as well."
Hausauer started the GoFundMe to help Wendler’s family cover any unexpected expenses and in just a couple days more than 500 people have raised more than $45,000 to help.
Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) said the investigation into the incident is still pending and asks the public to slow down and move over when emergency personnel are on the road.
"We ask that you continue to keep Sgt Wendler and his family in your thoughts and prayers. Recovery for them will take time and they, as well as friends and co-workers, will need love and support," ISP said on Facebook. "And thank you to all the people across our state who have truly demonstrated the Idaho Way of taking care of each other. We are proud to be a part of our great state."
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