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Slow recovery for man shot in Walmart parking lot in Tumwater on Father's Day

Rickey Fievez was shot in the Walmart parking lot in Tumwater on Father's Day 2018 (KOMO Photo)

It's a long road to recovery for a man shot by a carjacking suspect at the Tumwater Walmart parking lot this past Father’s Day. But loved ones say he’s getting stronger every day. Doctors weren't sure Rickey Fievez would live at first but he continues to heal.

“I’m trying to get past what happened and get the strength to get back up and keep going,” said Fievez.

Fievez was shot twice by a man trying to steal his car. Police say 44-year-old Tim Day of McCleary, injured three people in a series of carjackings and a shooting rampage before he was shot and killed.

Since then, it's been a difficult journey. The shooting left Fievez paralyzed from the neck down immediately afterward. But since then, his family says he’s been able to move his fingers, his arms, and his toes.

Twice a day, he exercises.

“This is about as far as we can go,” said Fievez about his fingers.

With help from his wife Melinda, Fievez is moving forward. With help from his two son's Tyler and Kyle, he's getting better. But Fievez says the hope of seeing his grandson Aidan again, is what truly gets out of bed every day.

“Me and him are really really close,” said Fievez. “He used to call it grandpa's motorcycle, the wheelchair. Whenever he's around, he's always on my lap.”

“He wants to get on the ground and play with the grandkids again and do everything on his own,” said Fievez’s son Kyle.

Since Fievez was shot, he and his family have reconnected with Pastor David George, a trained EMT and licensed concealed-carry holder from Oakville. Police say George stopped the armed carjacking suspect by shooting and killing him. He then administered medical aid to Fievez until help arrived.

“I don't know what I'd have done if he had not been there. He saved my life,” said Fievez.

After the shooting, the pastor helped Fievez's sons remodel a home in Tenino to make it wheel-chair ready. Fievez left the hospital and moved into that home with his family last month.

There's a lot more help that the family needs though.

“Right now, we're trying to concentrate on how to get him a van so he can get out of this house,” said Kyle.

But they realize everything takes time.

Fievez hopes to walk and ride his motorcycle again. He says the shooting changed his life but it did not ruin it.

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