EAST PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — On New Year’s Eve, the Fon du Lac Police Department ran the booth for the Festival of Lights East Peoria Illinois (FOLEPI) Winter Wonderland, donating all proceeds to East Peoria Police Officer Karson Klyber.
Klyber was struck by a car while assisting with another crash, guarding against traffic in a squad car with the emergency lights activated.
Fon du Lac Police Chief Michael Johnson said they typically volunteer two or three times a season and donate 50 percent of proceeds to the marine department to support the dive team. However, after learning about the crash, Johnson wanted to donate the money to that officer.
FOLEPI leaders let 100 percent of the proceeds go towards the officer, and at the end of the night, they raised about $5,700.
The officer, in his 20s, is still hospitalized, according to Johnson. He said they do not know if he will be able to walk again, but the whole community is hoping for a positive outcome.
He said people turned out in droves on New Year’s Eve, many donating extra to the cause.
“The police is a family, whether you’re state, city, county, park district, we’re all one family,” he said. “And when somebody gets hurt, we come out in droves to help each other. The community is the same way. East Peoria is a strong community, all our officers are part of this community, and the residents know that.”
A GoFundMe page created for Officer Klyber can be found here for those interested in donating. As of New Year’s Day, the funds raised are now over $37,300.