Officer Carlos Yanez Jr.’s family set up a GoFundMe after a tragic shooting during a traffic stop in Chicago left him paralyzed. Yanez’s fellow officer, Ella French, was also killed during the attack. The officer’s family is looking for help paying Yanez’s medical bills and support in any way that “can lighten the load” on the family.
According to the GoFundMe page, Carlos Yanez Jr. “suffered from multiple gunshot wounds to the eye, brain, and shoulder all causing potentially lifelong disability. In turn, we suspect home modifications, accommodations, and transportation needs to increase accessibility and quality of life.”
The shooting occurred during a routine traffic stop on 63rd Street and Bell Avenue in West Englewood. The suspects inside the vehicle opened fire on the officers, killing Ella French during the attack. Police officers returned gunfire and injured one of the suspects. There were three people in the car during the shooting. Two of the suspects were brothers, police reported. They have since been charged with murder.
Officer Carlos Yanez Jr. was injured during the attack. Original reports claimed the 39-year-old sustained three gunshot wounds, including one in the shoulder and two more in the head. His family said that “he had so much of his face and eye socket fractured during this incident, but thankfully that has been surgically repaired. We remain hopeful for a miraculous recovery but have to prepare for what’s to come.”
According to the GoFundMe post, Carlos Yanez Jr. is “an amazing human being” and “is just so genuine.” His family wrote that “we all know him as a strong, hard-working, and good-hearted soul. He was ALWAYS on the GO and ALWAYS willing to help family, friends, and strangers alike.”
The officer, who had been with the Chicago Police Department for six years, has a wife, Brenda, and a 3-year-old son, CJ. He “deeply cared for the district he deserved” and “loved to do physical work, exercise, play with his son on his time off and he loved to dance.” His family said that the most tragic part of his injuries is that he is paralyzed in three limbs and may not be able to “hit the dance floor” in the same way again.
The hero cop always wanted to live in Englewood, according to the GoFundMe post. “He always spoke of the children,” his family shared. “Their innocence and how he wished he could bring some of them home. He said they deserved an environment free from so much gun violence, physical/sexual abuse, and neglect.” They admitted that Carlos Yanez Jr. “witnessed things he could never understand. But it never hardened him.”
Despite the hardships, Yanez “continued to take pride in getting guns off the streets and treating everyone he interacted with respect. He felt in his heart he was reducing gun violence and that is why he weathered the challenges of being a Chicago Police Officer in such a challenging district.”
Carlos Yanez Jr.’s injuries have dealt a massive blow to the family, especially his wife, Brenda. According to his family, CJ was born with Craniosynostosis and “had multiple cranial surgeries and needs ongoing therapies.” With Yanez in the hospital, Brenda will have to shoulder the financial, physical, emotional burden on her own. The family created the GoFundMe page to help ensure Yanez receives the best treatment.
So far, the GoFundMe page has raised nearly $128,000 in a little over two days. The post concluded, saying that “our hearts continue to be with Officer French’s and Officer Blas’ family and everyone impacted during these difficult times. We thank the dispatcher, Keith J. Thornton for his heroic and calm response and EVERYONE who assisted with the events that occurred that night.”
Officer Carlos Yanez Jr. has received inspiring words from his brothers in blue. Matthew Crosby, a retired St. Louis police officer who was paralyzed in 2010 while on the job, donated $100 towards the fund. He attached words of support with the donation. “Brother, keep fighting and keep living your life,” he wrote. “Don’t ever give up. You can and will still have an amazing life after all you’ve endured. I’m praying for you and your family.”