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A Chicago police officer who was left paralyzed following a shooting outside a bar last weekend has been released from the hospital.
Officer Daniel Golden, 31, was greeted outside Advocate Christ Medical Center on Friday afternoon by dozens of friends, family members and fellow officers. The gatherers formed an aisle that Golden was led through as they saluted and cheered for him.
“Seeing these people out here that he went to high school, grammar school, served on the Police Department with, it was so uplifting for him. It’s incredible,” said Patrick Golden, the injured officer’s father and a retired Chicago police detective.
After Daniel Golden was wheeled out of the hospital, he was placed into a Chicago Fire Department ambulance. Golden, who is paralyzed from the waist down, was then transported to the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, where he is set to begin working with physical therapists.
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Patrick Golden is convinced his son will “get through” the tough recovery process, he said.
“If he can do four years in the frozen tundra up in Alaska in the army, he can get through this, he can do this. He has a great mindset, he’s tough,” the senior Golden told WBBM-TV. “He is Army strong. He can do this.”
Patrick Golden also called for an end to gun violence in Chicago.
“We have to stop this senseless, senseless gun violence. There are too many people out here getting shot. There are too many people out here getting killed in the United States of America,” he said, WBBM-TV reported.
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Casey Szaflarski, Daniel Golden’s fiancé, also called for the community to “come together” and “work together” to stop the violence.
“We just want us to come together at this point, because this city is getting to a point where it is no longer safe, and we need to work together. Fighting each other, attacking each other, going against each other is not the solution. In order to do this, we need to communicate with each other,” she said Thursday on “The Story.”
The father also praised the emergency crews and medical staff who treated his son’s severed spine.
“Christ Hospital has been unbelievable. They saved his life. When I saw him the other morning, I thought he was gonna die in front of me. He was going into shock. Christ Hospital brought him back. They saved him. Hats off to Christ Hospital. I can’t say enough,” he said, per the outlet.
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A fundraiser for Officer Golden’s medical expenses has topped $1.2 million, including a single anonymous donation of $50,000.
His bio on the fundraiser reads: “Tragically Dan’s life would change forever by the actions of criminals. While out with friends and family, he did what all good cops would do and tried to break up a fight by separating the men and saving further harm for all involved.”
“The event was over when one of the offenders ran to his car, pulled a gun out, and fired 20 rounds at the group as they walked away. His younger brother was struck in the leg, receiving a graze wound. Sadly, another bullet struck Dan in the back and severed Dan’s spinal cord, missing his heart by millimeters, resulting in him being permanently paralyzed from the waist down. This devastating, life-altering event has forever changed the course of his life. All those who have known Dan are grieving after such a senseless, tragic event,” it says.
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It adds: “We are asking the community to support Dan and his fiancé Casey to help with all the financial demands they will face in the coming years.”
Fox News’ Graham Colton contributed to this report.