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Tyler King still on long road to recovery 1 year after Stone Arch Bridge shooting

1 year after Minneapolis shooting, Tyler King still o long road to recovery
1 year after Minneapolis shooting, Tyler King still o long road to recovery 02:42

MINNEAPOLIS --  A thumbs up from Tyler King is so much more than a message of confidence, it's an acknowledgment of how far he's come and how much further he's willing to go.

Tyler and Abby King's story actually starts in Chaska, where they were high school sweethearts.

They moved to Nashville for new jobs and better weather, and together with their sons, Bennett and Knox, they'd come back every year to visit family.

Last summer, they visited for a family wedding on June 25, a Saturday night. The adults were out by the Stone Arch Bridge in downtown Minneapolis. As Tyler and his brother-in-law walked a friend to her car, a stray bullet struck him in the face.

"Shockingly he was moving both sides of his body, there were brain bleeds, his face was shattered," said Abby King.

RELATED: Young dad clings to life after hit by errant bullet near Stone Arch Bridge

The swelling caused a catastrophic stroke, paralyzing Tyler on the right side. He spent six weeks in Minneapolis, then six more weeks at a hospital in Chicago.

Slowly but surely, Tyler was coming back to life.

The Kings returned home to Nashville in September, just as the boys were starting school.

"We actually drove home from Chicago to Nashville. His dad drove, I was in the car, and it was surreal just stopping to eat," Abby King said. "The whole world moves and we're trying to reacclimate to living again. It was wild."

As Tyler took his first steps, Abby kept making great strides -- keeping schedules, making home improvements and working on a fairytale ending for a storybook family.

"If you have breath, you have purpose," Abby King said. "He says all of our names. He says 'I love you.' He can't converse like you or I, but he sure can be a part of a conversation. He's always been wise, a man of few words, and when he speaks, people listen. And we really listen now."

Police have not made any arrests in Tyler's shooting. His family says they don't spend time thinking about that. Instead, their focus is on Tyler's next goal: To walk without a cane, and maybe even one day play hockey again. 

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