Walk With Cody: Group Rallies Around Assault Victim

Walk With Cody: Group Rallies Around Assault Victim

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If there's one thing Cody Searchfield likes to do, it's walk.

"It's just my type of thing," he said.

Cody has autism and used to enjoy going for long strolls, until one day in June he was attacked while out for a walk near Suburban Propane in Glen Park. Cody told the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department a man punched him and knocked him down. There still hasn't been an arrest.

"It was really scary because he comes home and he was freaking out because all of these people just randomly decided to do that to him. It's terrible," Lexi Hudson, Cody's Sister said.

Since the incident, Cody has been hesitant to go out on his usual walks. So Sunday afternoon, a couple dozen people joined Cody on a 3 miler from Midtown Towers in Watertown to Salmon Run Mall to show their support.

"We wanted to let him know there are still a lot of people out there who are good and kind and that it's okay to walk," walk organizer Diane Collette said.

Along with friends and family, community members who had heard about Cody's situation came to walk with him. One of them was Kathy Tepfenhart, his preschool teacher

"I saw the article in the paper and I couldn't believe it was Cody Searchfield and I said I know that name I was his teacher many, many years ago," Tepfenhart said. "And then when I read what happened I just wanted to show him support."

Dressed in "Walk with Cody" t-shirts, the sea of red made its way through downtown Watertown and up Arsenal Street. The proceeds from the shirts are going towards Cody's medical bills.

Lisa Searchfield, Cody's mother said, "During the incident at some point he hurt his hip, And it's been bothering him ever since, which is devastating to me because he walks."

Now Cody's family just hopes he feels the support.

"I'm hoping he sees how many people are here and he'll just feel a lot more comfortable being out.," his mother said.

And once again walking the streets.

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