Philadelphia Police Officer Edward Davies received the highest honor the force can bestow on any officer during the Citizens Crime Commission's 33rd Annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Day Luncheon Tuesday.
The Valor Award recognizes Davies for "exceptional bravery and disregard for personal safety."
On Aug. 13, 31-year-old Eric Torres shot Davies in the stomach, below his bulletproof vest, as he struggled with a suspect inside the Almonth Mini Mart at 4th and West Annsbury streets in the city's Feltonville neighborhood, according to investigators.
The father of four, who still sees doctors almost daily and goes to rehab three times a week, carefully and slowly stood up from his seat next to the podium when the award was announced, leaning on a cane for support.
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"The cane, it's just a comfort," he said. "I still have leg problems. My right foot still bothers me."
The bullet pierced Davies' kidney, forcing surgeons to remove it, and severed an artery. Doctors placed him in a medically-induced coma for a time and he underwent multiple surgeries. More than a month after the shooting, he was released from Temple University Hospital.
"I still have another surgery in September," he said. "Hopefully that's the last one."
While Davies is hopeful he will return to work at some point, his focus remains on his recovery.
"I want to get 100 percent back to where I was before this happened," said Davies, who added that his youngest child, 2 1/2-year-old Justin, has helped. "He's my therapy everyday."
Meanwhile Torres, who led police on a car chase before crashing his car and running inside the corner store, is expected in court in June. Records show his trial is scheduled to begin June 9.
He faces several charges including attempted murder, assault on an officer and aggravated assault.