BEREA, S.C. (WSPA) – The community came together Tuesday night to show support for a trooper with the South Carolina Highway Patrol. The trooper was injured in a hit-and-run while on the job.
Multiple agencies and community members came out to show their support for Trooper Devin Kugler. He was injured on October 16 when officials said he was trying to conduct a DUI stop. His wife, Mandie Kugler, said they’re praying for a full recovery.
“On October 16th at 3:15 in the morning, the knock on the door was the most terrifying experience of my life,” said Mandie Kugler.
She said when she opened her door, she saw four uniformed officers.
“Standing on my porch telling me that my entire world has been shaken,’ she said. “That my best friend was in the hospital fighting for his life.”
Her husband, Trooper Devin Kugler, was one of two injured during a hit-and-run. Now, he’s been on a ventilator for 16 days and was just moved to a rehabilitation facility Tuesday morning.
“While my husband has put 7 surgeries behind him and has started the process of mending and healing an incredibly broken body,” said Kugler.
She said the journey ahead won’t be easy.
“We face permanent disfigurement, permanent disabilities, and future surgeries in the months and years to come,” she said.
Trooper Kugler is a father of five and has more than six years behind the badge.
“Devin, he’s recovering and he needs our support and we’re going to give him that, but it’s also nice to see support from our brothers and sisters from our surrounding agencies,” said Sergeant Joe Hovis, with SCHP.
The Light Em Up event brought together dozens of first responders, troopers, firefighters and EMS crews. There were lights, fireworks and a fundraiser for the family.
“We cannot accurately express the depth of our gratitude and the love for everyone we have met through this challenge,” said Kugler.
“It just takes a special person to be someone like Devin, I’m proud to know him and I’m proud that he works for the South Carolina Highway Patrol,” said Sergeant Hovis.
Kugler said her family is beyond grateful for all the donations, services, and most importantly, all the prayers.
Officials have set up a fundraiser to support Kugler and his family. To learn more about the fundraiser or to donate, click here.
Throughout the month, 5% of all the proceeds from the Big Clock of Berea will go to the Kugler family.