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Seven people were killed and more than 30 others injured in the Highland Park, Illinois, shooting.
As crowds gathered for a 4th of July parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park on Monday, a shooter opened fire from a rooftop, killing seven people and injuring more than 30 others.
On Tuesday, authorities identified six of the people who were killed. A seventh victim was identified on Wednesday. They ranged in age from 35 to 88 years old and included a grandfather described as a “lifesaver,” a lifelong synagogue member, and a couple who left behind a 2-year-old son.
In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, the toddler was spotted by other survivors, who cared for him until his relatives could be found.
Here’s what we know so far about his parents and the others who were killed in the shooting.
Irina McCarthy, 35, and Kevin McCarthy, 37, had taken their 2-year-old son, Aiden, to the parade. When they were killed, he was left alone in the chaos.
One parade attendee, Dana Ring, told WGN shortly after the shooting how she grabbed her three kids and made her way to an underground garage after gunshots began. There, she saw a woman holding a little boy who wasn’t hers, who was later identified as Aiden. She said the woman “wasn’t in the best place to take care” of the child, so Ring took him back to her parents’ house. While on the phone with WGN, she said detectives got in touch with the boy’s grandparents.
A GoFundMe started by Irina Colon states that Aiden’s grandparents Misha and Nina Levberg will now raise the toddler.
“We are devastated at the senseless loss of life during the tragedy of the Highland Park 4th of July parade,” Colon wrote on Facebook. “We lost our family member, Irina (Levberg) McCarthy and her husband Kevin McCarthy.”
Kevin McCarthy worked at Jaguar Gene Therapy and was known as a “star employee” with an “incredible work ethic.”
“Outside of work he was a very proud dad and devoted husband who adored his family,” Joe Nolan, chief executive officer of Jaguar Gene Therapy, wrote in an email to employees. “We will miss him tremendously.”
Nicolas Toledo, a 78-year-old grandfather who attended the parade with his family, was struck three times, his granddaughter Xochil Toledo told the New York Post.
“It could’ve been major. He took three bullets, and those bullets could have been aimed at either me or my boyfriend,” she said, calling her grandfather a “lifesaver.”
Toledo was not keen on going to the parade but went with his family because he was disabled and required around-the-clock care, the New York Times reported. He used a wheelchair and had other medical issues after being hit by a car in Highland Park a few years ago, and he’d recently moved back to the US after living in Mexico so that his family could care for him, according to the Times.
“What was suppose[d] to be a fun family day turned into a horrific nightmare for us all,” Xochil wrote in a GoFundMe.
He had eight children and many more grandchildren, she wrote, describing him as “a loving man, creative, adventurous and funny.”
Another granddaughter, Kimberly Rangel, said the family was broken by Toledo’s death. “I think you hear about these things on the news all the time, but you don’t expect it to happen so close to home, and especially to your family,” she told CBS Chicago. “It’s all kind of affected us really hard.”
The North Shore Congregation Israel also identified Jacki Sundheim, a former preschool teacher, as a victim. She was a “lifelong congregant” and “cherished member” of its staff, NSCI said in a statement.
“Jacki was senselessly gunned down watching a parade that’s she’s been to her entire life just two towns north,” Luke Sundheim, her nephew, wrote on Facebook. His aunt was “one of the kindest people you’d ever meet,” he wrote, and she had “endless love” for her husband and daughter.
“The world lost a truly special person and I’m both furious and incredibly sad that I won’t be able to spend any more time with her,” he continued. “I love America, but this can not keep happening to innocent loving people.”
Steve Straus, 88, was a financial adviser who took the train to work at a brokerage firm in Chicago every day, his family said, according to the New York Times.
“Only those who have left this world know what awaits, and for me I can only say that if there are bells at Heaven’s Gate they are chiming and cheering for you, for a life well lived, and a soul well served,” his niece Cynthia Straus wrote on Facebook. “But, let’s be clear NO ONE should die this way.”
Katherine Goldstein, 64, went by Katie and was a devoted mother to two daughters in their early 20s, according to the Times. Her husband, Craig Goldstein, told the newspaper that she took their older daughter to the Highland Park parade so she could meet up with friends from high school.
Her daughter, Cassie Goldstein, told NBC Nightly News that her mom was waving to the parade floats when she first heard what she thought were firecrackers going off.
“And then I looked up and I saw the shooter shooting down at the kids, and I told her that it was a shooter and that she had to run,” Cassie said.
They were running next to each other when her mom was shot in the chest and fell to the ground.
“And I knew she was dead so I just told her that I loved her but I couldn’t stop because he was still shooting everyone next to me,” she said.
On her Instagram page, Goldstein mainly shared photos of her two daughters, celebrating their graduations and beaming by their sides. She was an avid bird-watcher and wanted her ashes scattered by a bird sanctuary on the Chicago lakefront, her husband said.
“I got 22 years with her,” Cassie said, her voice breaking. “And I got to have 22 years with the best mom in the world.”
Uvaldo, 69, attended this year’s parade with family members. He and his wife, Maria, and his grandson were shot on Monday, according to Nivia Guzman, his granddaughter.
“A parade my family attends every year filled with happiness and laughter,” Guzman wrote on GoFundMe. “This year was different, this year was filled with fear, sadness, and tragedy.”
In a statement to BuzzFeed News, the Cook County medical examiner confirmed Uvaldo’s death on Wednesday at Evanston Hospital.
Uvaldo was shot in the arm and the back of his head, and was in critical condition at the hospital, his granddaughter said. On Tuesday, Guzman wrote that the doctors told her family “there is nothing left to do based on where the bullet hit the brain,” and that her grandfather had been taken off the ventilator.
Guzman later wrote an update thanking people for the donations.
“We just received news that there is nothing left to do for our papi,” she wrote. “All further donations will go towards assisting my grandmas needs when the time comes.”
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