Injured Georgia police officer given trip to Orlando to recover

A local nonprofit organization gave a Georgia police officer injured in the line of duty an all-expenses paid weekend getaway to Orlando with his family.

Henry County, Georgia police officer and SWAT operator Keegan Merritt was shot in the hand in April during a day-long stand-off. 

A fellow officer was also shot in the hip and chest. 

Merritt almost lost his middle finger. He has not returned to work and is still recovering physically. He goes to physical therapy twice a week and sees a surgeon every two weeks. 

"I saw the surgeon on Monday. He's hopeful. [I'm] just really working on my strength to get it back. I'm at 28 percent on my dominant hand."

The local nonprofit organization Hometown Heroes Alliance is now giving Merritt the chance to heal mentally with his family. 

The organization gave his family an all-expenses paid weekend getaway to Florida, complete with a trip to SeaWorld Orlando and off-shore fishing in Port Canaveral.

"[We] cherish it a little bit more with the family," Merritt said about the time he now spends with his wife, Jennifer, and their two children.

Hometown Heroes does work all over the country, helping first responders who have been injured in the line of duty. 

Board of Directors Member Jeff Brown said their goal is to make sure first responders know they will always have support.

"We know that these injuries are debilitating and a lot of cases these guys don't even go back to work," Brown said. "We've done landscaping. We'll build wheelchair ramps, make car payments, whatever needs to happen. A lot of times it's behind the scenes." 

Brown said they rely on donations to do their work.

To learn more about Hometown Heroes and how to make a donation, visit their website.