PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — On Thursday, the Citizens Crime Commission honored the heroic efforts of those who serve, along with everyday citizens answering the call.
Yardley Borough Police Chief Joseph Kelly was shot last August. Today, he’s healed and back on the job, reflecting on the moment that changed everything and the brotherhood who rushed in to help.READ MORE: Viewing Underway For Fallen Firefighter Lt. Sean Williamson In South Philadelphia: 'It's A Terrible Tragedy'
“The speed of that event was so quick I got to really realize how these things go down and how they could end tragically,” Kelly said.
Nine months nearly to the day after Kelly was shot in the hand and ear, he reflected back on what changed for him most while surrounded by his wife and daughter.
“I had a broken finger as well as several bullets removed from my left hand. I guess I appreciate life a lot more,” he said.
On Thursday, the chief joined more than a dozen local law enforcement officers honored for their bravery in the line of duty at the 41st Annual Citizens Crime Commission Appreciation Luncheon inside the Bellevue on Broad.
“It acknowledges the heroism, the accomplishments and just really the commitment and dedication of law enforcement not just in Philadelphia but all over,” Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said.READ MORE: Phillies' Bryce Harper Out Indefinitely With Broken Thumb After Being Hit By Pitch In 4-2 Win Over Padres
Several civilians were also celebrated for answering the call, including Central High School student Christina Lu, who fought back against anti-Asian bullying while riding the subway home from school.
“It was an instinct for me to stand up because I couldn’t stand seeing violence happen right in front of me,” Lu said.
While both Chief Kelly and Lu shy away from the title of hero, both remain grateful to those who also stepped up to help on those fateful days.
“The fact that people I’ve never met risked their lives to get to you in such a quick fashion is so humbling,” Kelly said.
They’re urging everyone to do their part in the fight for justice.
“Use your voice because without using our voice nothing will change,” Lu said.MORE NEWS: South Philadelphia Shooting Leaves 2 Men Injured: Police
Lu plans to attend Penn this fall to study medicine and continue to help others.