VIDEO: Paralyzed Officer Stands For National Anthem For First Time In 14 Years

Peoria Police Investigator William "Bill" Weigt has been paralyzed since he was shot in the line of duty in 2005.

Peoria, AZ – A Peoria police investigator who was shot and paralyzed in the line of duty 14 years ago was able to stand to present the American Flag during the Special Olympics Arizona opening ceremonies for the first time, thanks to his new high-tech wheelchair (video below).

“I'd been wanting to stand for the national anthem for 14 years," Peoria Police Investigator William “Bill” Weigt told Today. “I was a little overwhelmed at first, but it was so exciting.”

Investigator Weigt, a former U.S. infantry soldier, was one of several Peoria police officers who responded to a report of a shooting at approximately 4:30 a.m. on Dec. 17, 2005, the Peoria Police Department (PPD) said in 2017.

The gunman fled the area in a vehicle, then led officers on a brief pursuit when they spotted him.

At one point, the suspect stopped in the middle of the street and opened fire on the pursuing officers, the PPD said.

One of the rounds hit Investigator Weigt just above his ballistic vest, resulting in severe damage to his spinal cord, WTHR reported.

The gunman was killed during the shootout.

Despite the severity of his wounds and the permanent paralysis caused by the bullet, Investigator Weigt returned to duty in less than a year, the PPD said.

“Today, he continues his service to the Peoria Police Department and the citizens of Peoria in our criminal investigations division,” according to his department. “We are very thankful that Bill is still with us. Today, and every day, we honor [his] commitment and dedication to the citizens of Peoria.”

The PPD shared a photo and video footage of Investigator Weigt and his fellow Honor Guard members as they participated in the Special Olympics Arizona opening ceremonies on Oct. 25.

When the ceremony was over, the investigator was surrounded by the Olympians, who gave him hugs and posed for photos, Today reported.

His nephew, Andrew, was among them.

“That was probably the most special thing,” Investigator Weigt told Today.

When he got into his car to leave later that night, he became emotional while reflecting on the totality of everything that had just occurred, he explained.

Investigator Weigt said he is especially grateful that others with disabilities view him as an inspiration.

He is also thankful for his Permobil F5 motorized chair, which allows him to lay, stand or sit.

"I had lot of spasms and pain," the investigator told Today. "Being able to change positions helps with that. I feel good."

He called his new chair a “blessing.”

"Of course, I would like to go and get my body back, but I can't, so I make the best of what I've got," Investigator Weigt said. "And I have a really great life.”

You can watch footage of Investigator Weigt and his fellow Honor Guard members in the video below:

Comments (23)
No. 1-15
RetiredCorrections
RetiredCorrections

Much respect, where there is a will, there is usually a way .

Vodkabreakfast
Vodkabreakfast

That is some limited edition humanity right there. God gives him a heavy cross because He knows that the rest of us occasionally need reminding that the seed of strength grows from the heart.

BlueLM101
BlueLM101

Amazing!!

SARick
SARick

I'm a better person for having seen this courageous act.

Aramovich
Aramovich

And thanks to the Peoria police for keeping him on. Class act all around. NYC, SF, LA and others - take note

Buzz17
Buzz17

Many tears in my eyes as I read this article & watched the video & heard the bagpipes. I'm Scottish; those pipes always make me cry--but seeing Officer Weigt standing, holding the US flag, obviously with great pride--that did it--the sobbing began!!! He's a terrific role model for all young men in our nation! God bless & keep him & his fellow Peoria officers now & always!

JBo
JBo

In the dictionary, the word "Warrior" has a picture of this guy next to it.

Marxest
Marxest

I'm glad that he was able to stand up after all this time. I know the pain was intense. I thank that officer for his service and wish him well in his convalescence. But I don't know if standing up for the nationalist anthem was worth all that pain. I know I wouldn't stand for that horrible theme. Well, he's white. The nationalist anthem was written for whites specifically. It certainly wasn't written for anyone else, that;s for sure.

Gramercy
Gramercy

How endearing...what a wonderful act to allow rot be performed. wish other forces would follow the lead....

Gramercy
Gramercy

Leave the USA...you don't want to be here..and ya know what, WE AMERICANS DON'T WANT YOU!

Njaz
Njaz

I absolutely LOVE this! 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸👍👍

Stanracer
Stanracer

Fantastic..🤣👍

magnumforc
magnumforc

God Bless Bill Weigt! So proud!!

Shastabeau
Shastabeau

God Speed Bill! God Speed sir!

tfort
tfort

Good for him. I can't imagine the stress of not be mobile would be on yourself and your family.