Witnesses at Highland Park say that the last act of a Highland Park victim was to shield his 2-year-old son from gunfire.


Father and son speak out about how they helped their little boy after his parents were shot during the Highland Park Fourth of July parade.

Morgan Brooks and Tom were just arriving at the parade when gunfire erupted.

The panicked crowd tried to find a way but they found little Aiden under the care of his father Kevin McCarthy. 

“Morgan says, ‘There’s a boy, dad.’ And I said, ‘Let’s go!’ And he’s like, ‘No, there’s a boy.’ It didn’t register at first. And then he showed me. He said, ‘There he is. Let’s go get him.’ I’m like, ‘Let’s go get him.’ I tried to pull the boy from under his father by his arms but he was underneath him pretty good. So, I think Morgan at the time helped the guy get up a little bit, moved him just enough so we could pull out Aiden from under his father,” Tom Brooks said.

Kevin McCarthy was still breathing at that moment, his blood was still gushing from multiple gunshot wounds. Irina, his wife was also nearby, and apparently had already died.

“[Kevin] was breathing, but he wasn’t saying anything. He wasn’t able to speak, but he was able to breathe,” Morgan Brooks said.

They say Aiden, who was covered in his dad’s blood, remained calm.

“[Aiden] said, ‘Dad shot? Mom shot?’ And I would say to him, ‘Everything’s going to be fine.’ I didn’t know his name. I didn’t know. I was just talking to him, telling him everything was going to be fine. He just kept saying that over and over again. Wasn’t crying, very calm, very wide-eyed. When we pulled him out from under his father, we inspected him, pulled his shirt up, because he had blood all over him,” Tom Brooks said.

Brooks tried comforting Kevin McCarthy, as he was dying.

“We spoke to him at the end. We were telling him that his son’s going to be OK, his son is safe. That’s what we were telling him,” Tom Brooks said.

They want the whole world to know that Kevin did all he could for his son.

“He was shielding his son in the last moments of his life. True hero, unbelievable,”Tom said.

A GoFundMeAiden has raised almost $3 million.