‘Taken to Soon’: Remembering the Highland Park Shooting Victims

CHICAGO ( Associated Press) — Two of the Victims of the July 4th Parade Massacre He is left behind by a 2-year-old son in a Chicago suburb. Was living in Illinois with another family after being injured in a car wreck about two months ago.

For some, it was a tradition. They were ardent travelers, members of their synagogues, and professionals. But in a barrage of bullets, he became the latest victim of a horrific mass shooting.

The victim was 37-year-old Kevin McCarthy; Irina McCarthy, 35; Katherine Goldstein, 64; Stephen Strauss, 88; Jacqueline Sundheim, 63; Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza, 78; and Eduardo Uvaldo, 69.

Kevin and Irina McCarthy

It was supposed to be a fun day for the couple, who brought their 2-year-old son, Aiden, with them to watch marching bands and patriotic floats.

Instead they were hit by bullets, leaving their son orphaned. A stranger grabs the child covered in blood and hands it to Greg Ring as he takes cover with his wife and three children behind a popular pancake house.

Ring described the exchange with the unnamed woman on Wednesday, saying, “We kind of met and didn’t say anything… I held out my arms, and she gave it to me.” His car in shock.

Pointing to the parade route, the boy said, “Mommy, daddy, mommy, daddy.”

The family was later able to identify the boy and reunite him with his grandparents. McCarthy’s friends said that Irina’s parents would take care of the boy going forward.

Irina Colon wrote on a GoFundMe account created for the family and Aiden that the boy “will have a long road to heal, find stability, and eventually navigate life as an orphan.”

Stephen Strauss

He showed up early for the parade and was participating alone, according to his grandson, who had dinner with him that night.

The Independence Day parade was an annual tradition for Strauss—one of the many ways the 88-year-old financial advisor remained active and involved in his community. According to his family, Strauss used to ride the train to work every day, walked and biked regularly and loved visiting art museums and festivals.

“Despite his age, he was taken away too soon,” said grandson Maxwell Strauss.

Maxwell and his brother Tobias recall going out to dinner with their grandfather on Sunday, a weekly routine that remained in place despite the COVID-19 pandemic, with grandchildren going outside his window.

The brothers said that losing their grandfather was a real experience. Maxwell Strauss said, “You never really think that something like this could happen to you or your loved ones.”

Strauss is survived by a brother, a wife, his son and four grandchildren, whose family the family said he was with.

Jacqueline Sundheim

She loved her synagogue, where she once taught preschoolers and coordinated bar and bat mitzvah ceremonies.

Synagogue officials said in a statement that she had worked there for decades and was a dedicated, lifelong member known for her kindness and warmth.

“There are no words enough to express the depth of our grief for the death of Jackie and our sympathy to her family and loved ones,” the statement signed by three top synagogue leaders said.

Sundheim, 63, was survived by her husband, Bruce, and their daughter Leah, according to an email sent to the congregations by the synagogue. She was one of the first victims to be identified after the shooting.

Katherine Goldstein

Her husband described her as an easy-going travel companion who was always game to visit far-flung places.

“She Didn’t Complain,” Craig Goldstein Tells The New York Times, “She was always along for the ride.”

Goldstein was a mother to two daughters, Cassie and Alana, in her early 20s. She joined the parade with her older daughter so that Cassie could reunite with high school friends, hospital doctor Craig Goldstein told the newspaper.

Dr. Goldstein said his wife had recently lost her mother and that he wondered what kind of arrangements she could make when she died.

He recalled that Catherine, an avid bird watcher, said she wanted to be cremated and scattered her remains in the Montrose Beach area of ​​Chicago, where there is a bird sanctuary.

Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza

Chicago Sun-Times. As per reports, he had come to Illinois to visit his family about two months ago.,

His family wanted him to live permanently because of the injuries he sustained after being hit by a car during a trip to Highland Park a few years ago. The newspaper reported that he was hit by three bullets on Monday and died on the spot.

His death left a large, loving family mourning his loss. One of his granddaughters, Xochil Toledo, organized an online fundraiser. For his funeral expenses which have exceeded $130,000.

Nichols was a “loving, creative, adventurous and funny”, she wrote, describing him as a father of eight and a grandfather of many. “I love you Abuelito.”

Eduardo Uvaldo

For the Uvaldo family, like others in the Highland Park area, the Independence Day parade was an annual tradition, according to a GoFundMe page hosted by their granddaughter.

When shots fired from a terrace along the parade route, Eduardo Uvaldo was shot in the back of his arm and head. According to the fundraising page, his wife Maria was shot in the head and her grandson was shot in the arm.

Eduardo Uvaldo was brought to the hospital where, after receiving treatment and evaluation from doctors, the family was told there was nothing left to do, Guzmán wrote. A GoFundMe update suggests he was taken off life support on Tuesday.

Uvaldo died at Evanston Hospital just before 8 a.m. on Wednesday.


Savage reported from Chicago and Wenhuizen from Madison, Wisconsin. Associated Press journalist Martha Irwin in Chicago and Heather Hollingsworth in Kansas City, Missouri also contributed to this report.


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