A wounded Chicago police officer received a special honor Saturday morning at the 8th annual "Run to Remember."
Officer Del Pearson was the official starter for the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation’s annual 5K run which honors the city's fallen and injured officers. Runners stepped off at Gold Star Families Memorial and Park, just east of Soldier Field.
"It’s a huge honor for me to be able to do something to give back for Chicago Police Memorial Fund. They’ve been with me every step of the way," he said in an interview on Friday.
Pearson was shot during a chase on the south side on March 19. The bullet tore into an artery and lodged near his spine. Colleagues made a split second decision and rushed Pearson to the hospital rather than wait for an ambulance to arrive.
He believes it was prayer that saved his life on that day.
"I’m entirely grateful for every officer there and at the hospital that night," Pearson said Thursday. "I’m amazed at the power of prayer now."
Pearson nearly died. Officials said he lost an enormous amount of blood, but he miraculously survived. He left Trinity Christ Hospital just eight days after the shooting. Colleagues were there to salute him as he left and he went home to neighbors and community members showing their support.
The Run to Remember raises funds and awareness for the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation, which provides financial support to families of officers killed or severely injured in the line of duty.