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Covington police officer Rashad Rivers continues road to recovery
Rashad Rivers
Covington Police Officer Rashad Rivers returned home on May 28, just five days removed from being shot while responding to a call. - photo by Special Photo

COVINGTON, Ga. — After being critically injured in the line of duty on a May 23 call, City of Covington police officer Rashad Rivers returned home just five days later and remains on his personal road to recovery. 

Moments ago, Covington Police Department’s (CPD) official Facebook page shared a video of Rivers while he is at home resting. Rivers’ remarks were full of thanks and gratitude for everything that’s been done in support of his recovery. 

Rivers was shot while responding to a domestic call at the Oyo Hotel on Alcovy Road around 10:30 p.m. on May 23. He was then rushed to Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta and was listed in critical condition after being shot in the face.

According to CPD’s Facebook page, on May 24 at 7:34 a.m., Rivers was in stable condition. 

Afterward, Rivers underwent surgery. In an interview with The Covington News, Lt. Daniel Digby explained what all the surgery entailed. 

“He had his jaw worked on and it’s currently wired shut so it can heal where he took the gunshot in his face. It broke his jaw as it was going through,” Digby said. “Everything’s been set back in place and everything should heal back to normal and he’s expected to make a 100 percent recovery from this incident.” 

Digby picked up Rivers from the hospital and drove him home on May 28, too. Digby described the time Rivers left the hospital and returned home as a “special moment.” 

“Just knowing that, less than a week before that what he just went through. The chaos of that moment on Tuesday night and then Saturday we’ve moved past that to, not only is he going home, but within a month or so he’ll be making a full recovery and hopefully back at work…it’s a good feeling. 

“After just the emotional roller coaster of these kinds of events, it’s like the dust has settled or that calm after the storm. It’s like, ‘Yes, we’ve been through a mess, but things are getting back right, settling down and he should be back with us soon.” 

People displayed their support of Rivers on social media throughout this time. 

CPD’s Facebook post notifying the public of the initial incident drew 1,000-plus shares, 358 comments and more than 1,500 reactions. Some iteration of the word “pray” was featured the most often throughout all of the comments. 

More than 3,000 reactions were made on CPD’s post publicizing Rivers’ return home along with 333 comments and 386 shares. “Such great news!” “Welcome home” “So amazing!” “Praise God” are just a few of the comments made by several individuals. 

Another post that was shared hundreds of times was one that featured “#wegotyoursix206.”

“206 is his badge number and six is your back,” Digby said. “It’s basically saying, ‘We got your back, Rivers.’”

Digby has not been shocked by the backing of the local community.

“We’ve seen it in the past. We have no doubt that, when we need it, the community is going to be there for us,” Digby said. “We’re imperfect people doing this job. We carry a lot through these incidents. It helps us more than the community can know to see the support and have their prayers for us.”  

Digby made it clear, too, that Rivers is “chomping at the bit” to return to work. And, even though Rivers still has a ways to go in his recovery process. Digby believes that, when Rivers does return, he’ll have quite the testimony. 

“He’s gone through an incident within the first year of his career that most in law enforcement, hopefully and fortunately, won’t ever have to go through and he’s itching to get back out here. It speaks volumes to the person he is,” Digby said. “He can use this to help the other officers as he progresses through his career as well. And it’s good for other officers to see like, ‘Hey, look. He went through a tragic event and he’s on the other side.’ And I’m sure when he gets medically cleared whenever it is that he’ll be back out here working hard and doing a good job again.”