MAHNOMEN, Minn. - Emily Dewey arrived at the school here Friday evening to an overwhelming show of support, smiles and hugs included.
Dressed in a green T-shirt designed in honor of her husband, Christopher, Emily Dewey brushed away an occasional tear as she returned the smiles and greetings at the benefit dinner honoring her husband recovering from gunshot wounds.
"Thank you" was the repeated message Dewey shared with the hundreds who turned out at the benefit while her husband is recovering at Fargo's MeritCare Hospital in satisfactory condition.
Christopher Dewey, a Mahnomen County sheriff's deputy, was shot in the head and abdomen Feb. 18 while on duty in Mahnomen. Two men have been charged in connection with the shooting and the nearly nine-hour standoff that took place before they surrendered.
"It's been such a roller coaster - he's doing so well," Emily Dewey said of her husband. "I've told him for so long what an amazing man he is. I'm so proud of him."
Mahnomen County Sheriff Doug Krier said about 400 people came to the school for the benefit dinner and bake sale within the first hour. "It makes me feel really good. When tragedy happens, it shows we come together as a community."
Green, black and gray shirts with the message "A brother in brown is never down" printed on them also were sold at the event.
"It shows you might kick us down, but we're not staying down," Krier said of the message directed at his department's officers, whose uniforms are brown.
Emily Dewey said plans are being made to relocate her husband to a rehabilitation center so Christopher can receive more treatment. One place being considered is the Craig Hospital in suburban Denver, she said.
"I'm blown away, we're just so appreciative," said Eric Dewey, Christopher's uncle, of the outreach efforts to help his nephew and the family since the shooting. "I believe the Good Lord's got his eye on the boy."