Hospitalized East Peoria cop feels the community’s support, his girlfriend says

Photo from Julia Harcharik
Photo from Julia Harcharik(25 News/Heart of Illinois ABC)
Published: Jan. 19, 2022 at 8:23 PM CST
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EAST PEORIA (25 NEWS) - Hit by a suspected drunk driver late last month, injured East Peoria Police Officer Karson Klyber can feel the community’s support, his girlfriend told 25 News on Wednesday.

A day earlier, an East Peoria restaurant raised $16,110.45 from sales, tips, and donations for Officer Klyber. The line at Potbelly Sandwich Shop was out the door.

“That’s not small change,” remarked Deputy East Peoria Police Chief David Horn.

“It just been so humbling,” said Horn in describing the community’s response.

At Potbelly, franchise owner Jeff Ackerman said, “we were making sandwiches faster than we ever made them.”

Hundreds showed up on Tuesday including dozens of local officers showing support for Klyber, who recently became a Dad.

Ackerman hoped to raise $10,000, “and then to do what we did was awesome.”

Julia Harcharik, who’s been with Officer Klyber for two years, now spends 12 hours with him each day as he recovers at a Chicago hospital.

Harcharik said Klyber knows people are supporting him in Central Illinois.

“He can see all of it. He can feel all of it. He hears it all,” she said.

Harcharik said Klyber has a long road to recovery, but he’s making remarkable progress, and he can’t even fathom the support he and his family are receiving.

“He wants to be back on the force, but one of his other biggest motivators is just the community in general, and wanting to get back to the amazing community that we live in,” Harcharik said.

There’s also a GoFundMe page, in which 681 people have donated $46,076 as of Wednesday night for Officer Klyber.

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