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'He Gave A Darn About The People He Dealt With': Community Honors Officer Arik Matson After Shooting

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A community is anxiously waiting for updates Tuesday night about Waseca Police Officer Arik Matson, who was shot in the head during a call Monday night.

Freeborn Fire Chief Steve Seipp and Officer Arik Matson are more than just fellow volunteer firefighters. They are brothers in blue.

"He gave a darn about the people he dealt with. He knew how to talk to people. He's just fun to be around," Seipp said.

When he heard an officer had been shot in Waseca on Monday night, he immediately texted Arik.

Officer Arik Matson
Officer Arik Matson (credit: CBS)

"I said, 'Heard some bad s--- went down, are you OK?' I didn't get a reply back, and at that point I guess you kind of know," Seipp said.

He says Matson's helmet and uniform will be waiting at the fire hall throughout his recovery. A few miles away in Alden, Lori Nelson knew she needed to do something to help.

"We just thought this is our way of paying it forward," Nelson said.

Matson's mom was there for Nelson and her family after her children were involved in a life-altering car accident in 2004.

"We understand how supportive the community can be and how that will help the progress moving forward," Nelson said.

Officer Arik Matson T Shirt
(credit: CBS)

Through their screen-printing company, 407 Designz, Nelson and her son Trent are making T-shirts, with all the proceeds going towards Matson's family. They've already received hundreds of orders.

"We thought, 'Well maybe 50?' But there's some people talking about, asking if we ship, and so this is not just local anymore. This has gone further than that," Nelson said.

To order a shirt, send a message to the 407 Designz Facebook page.

Town leaders in Freeborn are asking people in southern Minnesota to leave blue lights on outside of their homes every night until Matson comes back home.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Matson and his family.

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