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Highland Park marks year since July 4th parade shootings with moment of silence


By Chris Boyette, CNN

(CNN) — Highland Park, Illinois, marked one year since a gunman killed seven people and injured dozens during a July Fourth parade with a moment of silence Tuesday, for “contemplation, prayer or reflection” in memory of the victims.

A patriotic celebration in the Chicago suburb last Independence Day ended with the mass shooting deaths of Irina and Kevin McCarthy, ages 35 and 37; Katherine Goldstein, 64; Jacquelyn Sundheim, 63; Stephen Straus, 88; Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza, 78; and Eduardo Uvaldo, 69.

“Eighty-three rounds, one minute, that’s how long it took for a single individual to permanently alter dozens if not hundreds of lives forever,” Mayor Nancy Rotering said at the remembrance ceremony. “The impact of that one minute is incomprehensible.”

A “community walk” followed the moment of silence, organized to “symbolize the reclaiming of the 2022 parade route as we build resiliency together,” the city said.

President Joe Biden, in a statement Tuesday, also remembered the Highland Park tragedy.

“In mere moments, this day of patriotic pride became a scene of pain and tragedy,” Biden said.

The President praised a statewide ban on assault weapons in Illinois following last year’s shooting, noting the ban “will save lives. But it will not erase their grief.”

Robert “Bobby” E. Crimo III, who was 21 years old at the time of the shooting, faces charges of first-degree murder for allegedly firing with a rifle from a rooftop during the holiday parade. He has pleaded not guilty to 117 criminal charges, including 21 counts of first-degree murder.

Along with the seven people killed, 38 others were injured during the shooting, officials said.

Investigators said the gunman wore women’s clothing during the shooting to conceal his identity and his facial tattoos, and to help him leave with the crowd fleeing in the shooting’s wake.

Sounds of gunshots pierced the sunny parade just after 10 a.m. CT along the town’s Central Avenue, about 25 miles north of Chicago, sending hundreds of attendees scattering in terror – abandoning strollers, chairs and American-flag paraphernalia on the streets. Witnesses described watching in horror as injured people dropped around them.

Crimo, a resident of the city of Highwood, near Highland Park, had legally purchased two weapons he had that day in the Chicagoland area, authorities said.

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