SAN DIEGO -- Nearly $17,000 had been raised as of Monday afternoon to help with recovery and related family expenses for a San Diego police officer wounded in a Southcrest-area shootout that killed his partner, who will be laid to rest later this week.
Wade Irwin, a member of the SDPD's gang-suppression unit, has been hospitalized since he and colleague Jonathan “J.D.'' De Guzman were shot in the Southcrest neighborhood late Thursday night.
Irwin, who has been a San Diego police officer for nine years, and De Guzman, a 16-year SDPD veteran, were conducting a field stop on Acacia Grove Way when they got into a brief gun battle. The man who allegedly opened fire on them, 52-year-old Jesse Michael Gomez, was critically wounded.
De Guzman, 43, died at Scripps Mercy Hospital later that night. Irwin, 32, underwent surgery at UC San Diego Medical Center and is expected to make a full recovery, according to SDPD officials.
Due to Gomez's medical condition, his arraignment has yet to be scheduled.
Irwin, father of a 19-month-old child, is anxious to get back on the job, police Chief Shelley Zimmerman said.
The chief described him as “so dedicated'' and characterized him as a man who “cares so deeply for his family, cares so deeply for our community and (who) went out there every single night, wanting to make a positive difference in the lives of our community members.''
According to a statement on the gofundme.com page, Irwin has been “fighting to get better every day.'' His wife has been by his bedside, as have his siblings.
“It will be a long road to recovery even after the physical wounds heal,'' the statement said.
Donations to aid in Irwin's recovery expenses can be made at gofundme.com/irwinfamilyfund. Members of the community can also purchase a t-shirt as a part of Irwin's fundraiser.
The San Diego Police Officers Association is collecting money for De Guzman's family. Donations for that fund can be mailed to: San Diego Police Officers Association, 8388 Vickers St., San Diego, CA 92111, or via its website sdpoa.org/about-widows-orphans-fund/.
SDPOA officials asked donors to include “Officer Jonathan De Guzman'' in the notes of the online donation or on the memo lines of their checks.
Rosary ceremonies for De Guzman will be held Tuesday and Wednesday at 6 p.m. and 6:30 p.m., respectively, at Corpus Christi Catholic Church in Bonita, and viewings will take place there from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. both days, according to the SDPOA.
A funeral Mass for the slain lawman is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday at the Bonita church, and a memorial service is slated to begin at 11 a.m. Friday at Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon. A procession to Glen Abbey Memorial Park in Bonita will follow the funeral.
All the events will be open to the public, according to the police association.