Stevensville is stepping up to support the local family of Montana Highway Patrol trooper Wade Palmer with a fundraiser from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 13, in the Super 1 Foods parking lot in Stevensville.
Palmer was shot several times on the morning of March 15, near the Evaro Bar and Casino. He remains in critical condition in a Salt Lake City hospital.
Stevensville Family Practice is coordinating the fundraiser.
Jill Fredrickson and JoAnna Leonard, staff members, are gathering donations of gift baskets and gift certificates for the silent auction and community barbecue fundraiser.
Family Pharmacy is part of the complex with Stevensville Family Practice/Community Medical Center.
The fundraiser is a $5-a-plate barbecue with hamburgers, hot dogs, chips and a drink, plus a silent auction and a 50/50 raffle.
“We have been in tears sometimes about the amount of great support and feedback that we have received,” Fredrickson said. “We just set out the idea that we wanted to do something, and had no idea it would get this big. The response from the community has been phenomenal and it is spreading across the state, supporting neighbors is the Montana way.”
People from Livingston, Manhattan, Belgrade and Bozeman have contacted her to contribute.
“It comes down to helping your neighbor and supporting the law enforcement community,” she said. “This is what Montana is about and is why we live here. People come together. We couldn’t have asked for better support.”
Community Medical Center and Super 1 Foods are donating the food and a professional grill chef so that 100 percent of donations will go directly to the family.
“The response from the community has been awesome with donations of gift baskets and gift certificates,” Fredrickson said. “We’re also going to have the Montana Highway Patrol down there with us to show support, and we have a couple firefighters and Forest Service guys coming out.”
To donate a gift basket or gift certificates, contact Fredrickson at Community Physicians Group (CPG), Stevensville Medical Center at 406-777-2775.
Other ways to donate include: Trooper Wade Palmer Benefit Account at First Interstate Bank, wheredeposits can be made at any branch or by mailing a check to 2500 N. Reserve St. Missoula, MT 59808; and online at GoFundMe: https://www.gofundme.com/trooper-wade-palmer-expense-fund. For a complete list of approved fundraising and updates visit online: dojmt.gov/highwaypatrol.
According to the Montana Highway Patrol website, Palmer has been with the patrol since 2012 and is stationed in Detachment 112 in Missoula. In 2015, he was awarded the patrol’s highest honor, the Medal of Valor, for his heroic lifesaving efforts at the scene of a multiple-vehicle crash involving a mother and her young children in December 2014.
Participants are encouraged to “Back the Blue, Wear the Green” at the Stevensville community fundraiser for the family of Trooper Wade Palmer from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 13, in the Super 1 Foods parking lot, 39 Stevensville Cutoff Road, in Stevensville.