A Toddler Was Found Wandering after Highland Park Shooting. Both of His Parents were killed by snipers.

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Little Aiden McCarthy, a 2-year-old boy, was left wandering in the bloody and confused aftermath of the Highland Park July Fourth parade shooting. A couple found Aiden McCarthy with a stranger who was shell-shocked and carried him gently to a fire station.

“Mama, dada come get me soon,”He shared his thoughts with the couple. “Mommy’s car come to get me soon,”The child answered when he was asked his name. 

Aiden is now an orphan. His parents were confirmed as among the seven people killed by a sniper, who fired rounds from a high powered rifle into a crowd celebrating the nation’s birthday in a Chicago suburb.

A GoFundMeA page was created for the fatherless mother and child. It has raised more that $2 million by Wednesday to support the toddler. “left in the unthinkable position; to grow up without his parents,”Irina Colon wrote about the account she set up for Aiden and the family. Aiden was reunited Monday night with his grandparents after social media exploded with photos of Aiden as authorities searched desperately for his relatives.

Robert, an alleged shooter “Bobby”Crimo III, who was charged with seven counts murder and a host of other charges, appeared in court Wednesday. Pictures and details about the victims were also released. The McCarthys, both in their 30s, a beloved great-grandfather who died in his wheelchair, and a lifelong congregant and “beloved”Staff members from North Shore Congregation Israel were among those who were killed. They had been teaching preschool at the synagogue for many decades.

All the dead have been identified. 

This is what we know so far about the victims of death.

Kevin and Irina McCarthy

Kevin, 37 and Irina (35) were Highland Park residents. They drove down Monday morning with Aiden to see the annual Independence Day parade, which featured marching bands, fire trucks, and dignitaries. When the fireworks began, the celebration was just beginning.

Irina McCarthy’s father, Michael Levberg, told the Chicago Sun-Times that Kevin died protecting his son.

“He had Aiden under his body when he was shot,”Levberg spoke to the newspaper. Monday night, Aiden told Levberg that he had picked Aiden up from the Highland Park police station.  “Mommy and Daddy are coming soon.”

“They were crazy about their child,”Levberg stated. “They were planning two.”

Both parents were graduates of DePaul University in Chicago. ““We extend our prayers to their families, particularly their son Aiden, and all of those who have been affected by this senseless tragedy,” DePaul spokesman Russell Dorn said Tuesday.

Both were science majors. Kevin worked at a gene therapy firm and was described as a “star employee” with an “incredible work ethic.”

Aiden will now be taken care of by his grandparents.

Nicolas Toledo

GoFundMe

Toledo, 78 was a beloved great grandfather who accompanied his extended families to the parade. 

“As a family we are broken and numb. Our condolences go out to all the other families who lost a loved one today. But today Nicolas is our guardian angel,”One of the granddaughters wrote about a GoFundMeAccount established to assist with funeral and medical costs.

Two other family members were also shot but survived the attack. His relatives claim that Toledo was shot three times while he was sitting in his wheelchair. Family members tried to protect him from the bullets. He was Mexican-born and had lived in Mexico for most of his life. However, he had recently returned to Highland Park to be near his family.

Jacki Sundheim

North Shore Congregation Israel

Sundheim, 64, was a congregant and had previously been a dedicated preschool teacher at North Shore Congregation Israel in Glencoe, Illinois.

Her synagogue describer her as a “beloved”Staff member who spent her childhood teaching preschool and all her life worshipping at synagogue.

“There are no words sufficient to express the depth of our grief for Jacki’s death and sympathy for her family and loved ones,”The synagogue made the statement in a statement.

“Jacki’s work, kindness and warmth touched us all, from her early days teaching at the Gates of Learning Preschool to guiding innumerable among us through life’s moments of joy and sorrow,”The statement was as follows:

Stephen Straus

Strauss Family

According to his grandsons, Straus, 88 was very excited about the July 4th parade.

“He was very active, he enjoyed life,”CNN interview with Maxwell Straus, 18-year-old. “He attended music festivals, loved to get outside, and biked into his 80s.”

He told his family that he was heading downtown to witness the festivities. Maxwell claimed that his father became very anxious after hearing about the terrible scene. He couldn’t reach Stephen by phone.

A hospital was called hours later to inform Stephen Straus that he had died.

“It was shocking, hard to imagine,”Maxwell spoke.

The remaining dead have been identified as 64-year-old Katherine Goldstein of Highland Park and Eduardo Uvaldo, 69, of Waukegan, Illinois.

 

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