Highland Park parade shooting: What we know about the victims

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. — Seven people died and dozens of others were wounded after a gunman opened fire on a Fourth of July parade from a rooftop in a Chicago suburb Monday, police said.

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According to WMAQ-TV and the Chicago Sun-Times, the shooting occurred shortly after 10 a.m. CDT at the holiday parade in Highland Park, Illinois. Following an hourslong manhunt, police arrested a person of interest, 21-year-old Robert E. “Bobby” Crimo, in connection with the case, the news outlets reported.

Crimo was charged Tuesday with seven counts of first-degree murder, and Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart said during a Tuesday evening news conference he anticipates “dozens” more charges being filed as the investigation unfolds.

During a Tuesday afternoon news conference, Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek identified six of the seven victims killed during Monday’s rampage. The final victim’s identity was released Wednesday morning and is a 69-year-old man from Waukegan. Those killed included the following five Highland Park residents and a visitor from Mexico:

  • Katherine Goldstein, 64
  • Irena McCarthy, 35
  • Kevin McCarthy, 37
  • Stephen Straus, 88
  • Jacquelyn “Jacki” Sundheim, 63
  • Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza , 78 (visiting from Morelos, Mexico)
  • Eduardo Uvaldo, 69

Here’s what we know so far:

Katherine Goldstein

Katherine Goldstein was remembered by her husband, Dr. Craig Goldstein, as a “perennial good sport,” who enjoyed exploring exotic locales “without batting an eye,” The New York Times reported.

“She didn’t complain, ‘There are bugs.’ She was always along for the ride,” Craig Goldstein told the newspaper.

According to her husband, 64-yer-old Katherine Goldstein devoted herself to raising the couple’s two daughters, who are now in their 20s.

Craig Goldstein said that his wife took her older daughter, Cassie, to Highland Park’s Fourth of July parade on Monday, so that Cassie could reunite with friends from high school, the Times reported.

Alana, the couple’s younger daughter, told the newspaper that her mother enjoyed playing games with her children, such as the word game Bananagrams.

Craig Goldstein also told the Times that Katherine Goldstein had been discussing personal arrangements with her siblings after the recent passing of their mother. He said his wife, an avid bird watcher, said that she wanted to be cremated and have her remains scattered in a bird sanctuary in Chicago’s Montrose Beach area.

Irina McCarthy

Irina McCarthy, 35, was mother to 2-year-old Aiden, who parade-goers found pinned beneath his father, Kevin McCarthy, in the aftermath of Monday’s tragedy.

Her father, Michael Levberg, told the Chicago Tribune that Irina was born in Moscow and moved with her family to Chicago before she was 3.

Irina’s childhood friend, Angela Vella, spoke briefly with The Associated Press, calling McCarthy fun, personable and “somewhat of a tomboy” who still liked to dress up nicely.

“She definitely had her own style, which I always admired,” Vella said.

Friends of the McCarthys told the AP that Irina McCarthy’s parents would care for the boy going forward.

Meanwhile, an online fundraiser to help cover the expenses of raising Aiden had accumulated more than $1.6 million within seven hours of being launched Tuesday afternoon.

Kevin McCarthy

Kevin McCarthy, 37, died at the scene, and passersby noticed a child, 2-year-old Aiden McCarthy, pinned beneath his father when the gunfire stopped.

His father-in-law, Michael Levberg, told the Chicago Tribune that Irina and Kevin met while working together at Physicians Interactive and got married about five years.

According to sale records, the couple bought their Highland Park home in 2018, the newspaper reported.

In an email to employees confirming Kevin McCarthy’s death at the parade, Jaguar Gene Therapy called him a star employee with an “incredible work ethic,” WMAQ-TV reported.

Stephen Straus

Family members remembered Stephen Straus, 88, as an avid reader, an exceptional joke-teller and a “culture vulture” who relished the Art Institute and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Tribune reported.

And despite his advanced age, his family marveled that the longtime stockbroker still made the trek five days a week via the Metro to his downtown office, citing energy “beyond his years,” the newspaper reported.

“My dad was just very much a Highland Parker,” his son, Peter Straus, said. “He lived here, and unfortunately he died here.”

In an image via Facebook, Stephen Straus’ niece remembers her uncle as a “sweet and gentle soul,” Fox News reported.

“I called him yesterday just to wish him a Happy Fourth of July and he didn’t respond, which I didn’t make much of. And then news stories started coming out about a shooting in Highland Park,” Peter Straus told the Tribune.

Straus is survived by his wife of nearly 60 years, Linda, two sons and four grandchildren, Fox News reported.

Jacquelyn “Jacki” Sundheim

Jacki Sundheim, a longtime congregant and staff member at North Shore Congregation Israel, also was killed in Monday’s shooting, according to the Sun-Times and WLS-TV. She was 63.

“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 as our Events and B’nei Mitzvah Coordinator – all of this with tireless dedication,” the synagogue said in a statement on its website.

“There are no words sufficient to express the depth of our grief for Jacki’s death and sympathy for her family and loved ones. We know you join us in the deepest prayer that Jacki’s soul will be bound up in the shelter of God’s wings, and her family will somehow find comfort and consolation amidst this boundless grief.”

NSCI Rabbi Wendi Geffen said Sundheim was married and had a daughter, the Sun-Times reported.

Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza

Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza, from Morelos, Mexico, was at Highland Park’s Fourth of July parade with family members when the gunman opened fire, striking him three times, relatives told the Sun-Times. Toledo died at the scene.

“We were all in shock,” Toledo-Zaragoza’s granddaughter, Xochil Toledo, told the newspaper, adding that her father and boyfriend also were wounded in the shooting. “We were crying. We couldn’t believe all that had happened. We couldn’t breathe.”

The78-year-old grandfather and father of eight, who had been visiting family in Illinois for about two months, was “a loving man, creative, adventurous and funny,” according to a GoFundMe campaign that his granddaughter organized.

“As a family, we are broken and numb,” reads the description of the fundraiser, which had received more than $33,000 in donations by early Tuesday.

Eduardo Uvaldo

Eduardo Uvaldo was 69 years old and from Waukegan. He was shot during the parade and was pronounced dead at Evanston Hospital after being transferred from Highland Park with severe injuries, CBS News reported.

His family said he was shot in the head.

Other members of Uvaldo’s family were also injured.

The family apparently went to the July 4th parade every year, according to a GoFundMe campaign set up by the family.

GoFundMe has set up a site listing verified fundraisers for the victims’ families if you would like to help.