CAMP VERDE, AZ — “When you get on the radio when you're a new guy it's like, it's so nerve-wracking,” says Sgt. Preston Brogdon with the Yavapai Apache Police Department. “Then to hear your voice back on the radio after something like this. It's emotional."
An affirmative call never sounded better to Sgt. Preston Brogdon and the Yavapai Apache Police Department.
“I got on the radio and broadcasted that Sam 230, which this is badge number is back home in jurisdiction,” says Yavapai Apache Chief of Police, Nathan Huibregtse. “That was a monumental occasion for me just because all these emotions that we've all carried this past two months."
A call sign the department wasn't sure they could ever radio again.
“I didn't even know,” Sgt. Brogdon goes on. “I was you know, out for a whole week. I didn't know any of that. Felt like I closed my eyes, and I woke up and my wife's right there."
February 9, Sgt. Brogdon was shot in the abdomen while responding to a call near Camp Verde, Arizona. The five-year veteran and father of four was airlifted in critical condition.
Brogdon would face multiple surgeries and an unknown road to his recovery. But two months later - Brogdon baffled his colleagues.
Huibregtse says, “I think this is a modern-day miracle in that, the round shattered his pelvis, and the doctors are now saying they're not recommending surgery because it's fusing back together by itself. It's just amazing to me."
With a homecoming fit for a hero, first responders lined the route from the rehab center in Chandler, saluting their Sargent on his escort home along the I-17.
Sgt. Brogdon says, “I wasn't expecting that. I'm thankful for it. It was it takes it took a lot to just not, you know, not break down and cry. I wanted to shake everybody's hand and I'm like, ‘Man if I take my hand off, I'm going to fall’."
Sgt. Brogdon says he returned home to the warmest and long-awaited embrace from his family. “It melts your heart to see their faces light up.”
Putting his life on the line, Sgt. Brogdon says. is part of service.
“Sometimes it's not rewarding.” Says Sgt. Brogdon. “But those times that it is, it's, you know, it makes you feel good. And just thank you. Thank you to everybody. I can't say it enough. Thank you."
Sgt. Brogdon tells ABC15, he wishes he could hop back into his police unit, but he knows it will take time to fully heal. Instead, he’s focusing on enjoying his first meal home: Taco Tuesday,
An online fundraiser has been set up to help Sgt. Preston Brogdon and his family as they continue to recover.