Thursday, February 19, 1998
Shot officer leaves hospital

BY TANYA BRICKING
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Kathleen ''Katy'' Conway's doctors have great hopes that she'll be able to run again and go back to her job fighting crime on Cincinnati's streets.

Katy Conway
Officer Katy Conway with one of her surgeons, Jay Johannigman, before being discharged from University Hospital Wednesday.
(Photo courtesy of Lt. Tim Schoch)
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For now, they're simply wishing her well as she goes home to recover. The 23-year-old officer, who survived being shot four times in a Feb. 2 attack, left University Hospital on Wednesday on a gurney. But she's already making steps toward recovery, said Dr. Jay Johannigman, one of her trauma surgeons.

Officer Conway, a beat cop in Over-the-Rhine, one of the city's roughest neighborhoods, withstood four shots from a man who came up to her cruiser and opened fire with a .357 Magnum. Despite wounds to her hips, upper legs, backside and abdomen, she was able to get to her gun and return fire, killing him.

The woman who doctors describe as soft-spoken and courageous so far has shied away from speaking publicly about what happened. Her family also declined interviews but released a statement saying she faces a lengthy healing period and they are grateful for prayers and love that people have expressed.

Those who know Officer Conway say her spirit speaks for her. ''In a lot of ways, we were sorry to see her go,'' Dr. Johannigman said.

She is able to walk with a walker but can't yet bear weight on her hip, he said. Doctors expect her femur to heal in six to eight weeks but recovery to take months, he said. She will continue physical therapy from home in Anderson Township.

Her colleagues are relieved. They pinned a police badge to her bedsheet and wheeled her out of the hospital with her flowers and balloons Wednesday.

''I looked at her this morning, and she looked so radiant - it's the best I've felt in a week,'' police spokesman Lt. Tim Schoch said.