Governor orders flags at half-staff

Tyeler Harris was killed in the line of duty on December 21, 2022. (submitted photo)

By Sarah Elmquist Squires

Managing Editor

Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon has ordered flags to fly at half-staff Sunday, as the state comes together to grieve the loss of Riverton native Tyeler Harris, who was killed in the line of duty on December 21, 2022, while working as an EMS on Interstate 80 during a winter storm. On Sunday, friends and family will come together to remember the life of the husband and father who is remembered for his contagious smile at 1 p.m. at the CWC Auditorium in Riverton. 

“He’s a true hero – somebody putting their life on the line every single day … It’s a Wyoming way, an American way,” U.S. Senator John Barrasso said of Harris during a recent visit to Riverton. 

The Saratoga resident was born in Laramie to Kathie and Jason Harris. He lived overseas for four years as a youngster while his father served in the military, then grew up in the Riverton area and graduated from Riverton High School in 2012. He married his high school sweetheart, Ashley, and the couple welcomed three sons. 

Tyeler attended CWC and graduated with an associate’s degree in criminal justice and an AA in general studies. One night, when Tyeler helped a man during dinner, he discovered his true calling – helping people in medical emergencies – and entered training to become an EMT, according to his obituary. He worked as an EMT/ER technician for Memorial Hospital in Carbon County, and was working toward his EMT-Advanced certification when he was tragically killed in the line of duty. 

“His family was everything and he always tried to stay connected to out-of-town family,” his obituary says. “An all-around country boy, Tyeler loved guns, fishing, camping, and hunting with his grandparents, father, and boys. He combined his passions with his parenting style and wanted to raise his boys to love God and respect the land and people He created. Every lesson Tyeler tried to teach his boys involved working hard for what you get, and helping those in need. Working as an EMT, Tyeler saw people at their most vulnerable, but would always have a smile on his face and offer a shoulder to cry on.” 

Following his celebration of life service, a reception will be held in the gallery outside the auditorium. The service will be live-streamed by Casada Funeral Home & Crematory at https://client.tribucast.com/tcid/6560594733. The live stream will also be shown at the Platte Valley Community Center in Saratoga. A Go Fund Me to help his wife and children is available at https://www.gofundme.com/f/tyeler-harrisemt.