Sunday, March 15, marks the one-year anniversary of the day Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Wade Palmer was shot in the line of duty near Missoula. Trooper Palmer survived being shot in the neck, face, and head. Palmer's injuries at one point that night were described as being irrecoverable. Trooper Palmer was eventually life flighted to the University of Utah Hospital and Attorney General Tim Fox arrived within hours. Fox said he was very impressed by the support that was shown.

“When I got to the hospital, there were literally hundreds of first responders from every agency imaginable,” Fox said. “For months, they were there in support of Wade and his family and Casey and his family. It was very heartwarming. Out of tragedy, we saw just how great human nature can be and how much we love our first responders, in particular our law enforcement officers.”

Fox also wanted to acknowledge all the people that supported trooper Palmer back home in Montana.

“Thanks to the combined love and support of so many in the Missoula area, law enforcement folks all across the country, the people in Utah, and many others, Wade and his family are coming along,” Fox said. “It is a long haul. I would ask that people continue to pray for the Palmer family and all those that were tragically struck by the events of that evening.”

Palmer’s wife, Lindsey, has provided an update on Wade’s recovery progress and asked that it be shared with the public:

It has been nearly a year since my husband, Wade Palmer, was injured in the line of duty. For a while now, I have been reflecting on how to give everyone an update. Wade and I are currently at Craig Hospital in Denver, Colorado. We came here so that he can both continue and intensify his therapy. He has benefited from the physical and occupational therapy he has received here. In addition, he has made great progress in using his iPad to communicate.

We continue to work on many things to make Wade’s day-to-day life easier. This includes expanding his endurance so that he can walk exclusively rather than relying on a wheelchair, and acquiring adaptive items for our house so that he is more independent in his daily activities. When we get home to Montana we will continue working with Wade’s therapists to build on the progress he has made here in Denver. We are particularly eager to work on his speech, as he has demonstrated repeatedly that he wants to get talking again.

Wade has been a beacon of hope and perseverance throughout this entire ordeal. His progress in therapy has shown that he is a tenacious fighter. The greatest blessing for us is that in spite of his challenges, Wade is still Wade. He is still the loving husband and father who brings strength and joy to his family.

We are grateful to everyone for the prayers, support, and kind words. Wade is, however, still sensitive to being touched and to loud noises. We respectfully ask for continued privacy during this time for our family.

Thanks for all the love,
Lindsey Palmer

Colonel Tom Butler, chief of the Highway Patrol, welcomed the news of Trooper Palmer’s continued recovery.

“Wade’s progress and courage are sources of inspiration for all of us in the Patrol. Our troopers and law enforcement partners take heart not only in seeing Wade fight through his challenges but also in the outpouring of support from across our great state and beyond. It’s clear that Montanans care about their law enforcement officers. We at the Patrol are thankful that Wade has come so far and are deeply appreciative of all those who continue to help him and cheer him on.”