More than $20,000 raised at benefit concert for Officer Ryan O'C - KMOV.com

More than $20,000 raised at benefit concert for Officer Ryan O'Connor

Posted: Updated:
The family of Arnold police officer Ryan O'Connor says his condition has improved in the past week. Credit: Arnold PD The family of Arnold police officer Ryan O'Connor says his condition has improved in the past week. Credit: Arnold PD
Officer Ryan O'Connor remains in critical condition after being shot by a suspect in his patrol car (Credit: Arnold Police Department) Officer Ryan O'Connor remains in critical condition after being shot by a suspect in his patrol car (Credit: Arnold Police Department)
ARNOLD, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

Injured Arnold Police Officer Ryan O'Connor opened his eyes for the first time on Thursday and is now breathing on his own.

Amid this big progress, the support for his recovery continues to grow. The city of Arnold, Arnold Food Pantry and the Fox School District hosted a Benefit Concert at Rickman Auditorium in Arnold Sunday evening. 

Butch Wax & The Hollywoods along with LunchBag Blues Band performed live for the attendees who help raise about 22,000 for O'Connor and his family. 

Concert-goers were able to purchase T-shirt and wristbands to show support. 

Those supporting this event jumped at the idea to hold this event."I called Dr. Wipke and asked him if it was possible to use Rickman Auditorium, this 1500 seat auditorium to hold this concert, and could we use it at no charge....and the school immediately said yes," said Vern Sullivan, who is on the school district's board. 

Officer O'Connor is still recovering from being shot in the back of the head a month ago while on duty. "We're really excited for the family to hear that now he has opened his eyes," said Sullivan.

The goal is to fill up all 1,500 seats in Rickman Auditorium.

"We would love to see this building have standing room only," said Phil Amato, president of the board of directors for the Arnold Food Bank. 

Amato says they gave 24 tickets to the O'Connor family in hopes of them sitting in the audience to see how much the community supports them.

"It gives everybody a chance to take a deep breath and maybe, for just a little bit, have a little sigh of relief, maybe a little enjoyment," said Amato. 

This concert is not the first show of support for the O'Connor's. Several dine out events have been hosted throughout the area over the last month and stacks of t-shirts and sweatshirts have been sold to raise money for the family. 

Some of the shipments being delivered beyond Jefferson County. The police departments in Florissant, Wentzville, O'Fallon and Webster Groves all ordered O'Connor shirts. Arnold police say orders have come from as far west as Santa Fe, as far north as Michigan and as far east as Florida. 

"There is progress being made, and we just hope and pray that that progress will continue," said Sullivan. 

Tickets for the benefit concert can be purchased at the door or ahead of time at: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3200966.

Copyright 2018 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly