MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A young Memphis man — now without half of his skull and a bullet lodged in his brain — is on the mend after being shot in the head while driving on Interstate 240.
Linkin Galdonez is at the start of his miraculous road to recovery after he was shot right between the eyes, while driving home from work.
He shared what he remembers about the shooting with WREG, and it’s a truly incredible story.
“I’m just grateful to be alive right now, sitting here doing most of the stuff I can still do,” he said.
Galdonez, a 2021 Christian Brothers High School graduate, spent his 20th birthday at Regional One hospital. A large piece of his skull was removed to allow his brain to swell.
“I’m pretty sure this is the entry wound but it didn’t exit,” he said.
Memphis Police say he was shot in the head on Feb. 5 after two suspects opened fire on I-240 near Perkins in broad daylight.
Galdonez says he was leaving work at FedEx when he saw a car speed by.
“I saw two people looking back towards someone, and those same two people just, like, climbed out of a window and started hanging. Then I saw the gun and they just started shooting,” he said.
Detectives collected 17 shell casings at the scene. Multiple shots hit Galdonez’s car, one piercing through his windshield. He says it was all a blur.
“I don’t remember feeling any pain because of the adrenaline,” he said. “I was bleeding a lot. I was like, dripping blood throughout the car, but I didn’t know this happened.”
Trying to escape danger, Galdonez crashed into a guardrail.
A witness, who also happened to be co-worker he’d never met at FedEx, pulled over to help.
“I’m grateful he stopped and called the ambulance to get me safe as possible,” he said.
Galdonez says doctors are amazed by his progress and say his skull can be reattached, at the very earliest, in late spring.
“My balance is pretty not there yet. I’m technically a fall risk, so I have to wear a helmet when I walk,” he said.
📧 Sign up for WREG newsletters and have the latest top stories sent right to your inbox.
📲 Download the WREG App today and stay up to date with breaking news and weather.
📡 See more breaking news, local news and weather from WREG.com for Memphis and the Mid South.
With no arrests in the case, he’s asking one question: “Why? Why’d they do this?”
He’s leaning on his family and friends for support.
“I’m just happy to be alive, happy to have a support system like I do,” Galdonez said.
His family has started a GoFundme to help with his medical expenses and eventually get him a new car. You can help by clicking here.