North Carolina trooper paralyzed in motorcycle crash coming home after 2 years in rehab

State - Regional

CRAMERTON, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — A North Carolina Highway Patrol trooper paralyzed in a July 2019 motorcycle crash that happened while he was chasing a suspect is set to come home after more than two years in physical rehabilitation.

Trooper Christopher Wooten tells FOX 46 he is excited to return to Cramerton right before Thanksgiving.

Wooten and his wife, Sharon, celebrated a milestone on Nov. 1. He turned 55 and retired from the North Carolina Highway Patrol, but it wasn’t the way he planned.

“If he just would have stayed, stopped and just accepted his ticket, that’s all it would have been,” Wooten said. “It could have changed my life and his.”

But the suspect, Dontay Kilgo, didn’t stop. Instead, he led Wooten on a chase, causing a crash that could have killed the trooper.

But Wooten wouldn’t give up. That crash paralyzed him from the neck down, and he spent months at Shepherd Center, a specialty rehabilitation center for spinal cord injuries in Atlanta.

“I’m thankful I’m here, and I’m thankful, you know, I’m able to think for myself, and as bad as my humor was before, I still have that, and I think my family appreciates that,” Wooten said.

He became an ordained minister just so that he could officiate the wedding ceremony for his daughter and son-in-law.

Now, he’s ready to come home to his newly-renovated house in Cramerton and his two dogs just two days before Thanksgiving

“I’m just so thankful to have him here and to be able to spend every day with him,” Sharon Wooten said.

The Wootens will soon celebrate 31 years of marriage. Life isn’t always how they planned it, but they’re grateful for every second together.

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