PHOENIX - From friends and family, to complete strangers, the community came together just over three months later to support Phoenix Police Officer Tyler Moldovan's recovery.
The young officer was shot and nearly killed on Dec. 14, 2021, and since then, he's making a miraculous recovery.
Moldovan spent a month in the hospital and part of that time was on life support after being shot eight times. Family and friends hosted a volleyball tournament for him on March 19 as they need all the emotional and financial support they can get.
"We're doing it all for Tyler," says Caleb Oaida, Moldovan's cousin. "When it first happened, we all thought for sure it was over. Even all the doctors said there's no chance for him living. We started planning the funeral that night."
Against all odds, Moldovan began his miraculous recovery. On Christmas Eve, he opened his eyes, and after that, he continued getting better and better.
The community has come together numerous times to support the Moldovan family in the months following the shooting. "I think it just brought everyone together more. You see blue ribbons throughout the town. You see ‘Pray for Tyler’ signs everywhere," said Anthony Benchea, a friend from church.
Loved ones say the money raised from the volleyball tournament will all go directly to Moldovan's slow but steady recovery, and that everyone's prayers are working.
"We would sit outside the hospital and just pray daily," Oaida said. "It brought us all hope," Benchea added.
Their message to Moldovan who's now in rehab, is, "Tyler's going to be watching this. He's watching everything and just want to say we love you and this is all for you."
Officer Moldovan, according to previous reports, was shot as police searched for a man seen running from a car that reportedly had been driven erratically a short time earlier.
The suspect, identified in court documents as 24-year-old Essa Kolareh Euge Williams, was arrested on Dec. 14. He was not present in court during his brief arraignment hearing, and a $3 million bond was set for him.
Essa Kolareh Eugene Williams, 24
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