NATIONAL NEWS

July 4 victims remembered for dedication to faith, family

Jul 8, 2022, 3:36 PM
Funeral for July parade shooting victim...
Mourners and police officers hug before entering the funeral for Jacquelyn Sundheim at North Shore Congregation Israel in Glencoe, Ill., Friday morning, July 8, 2022. Sundheim was one of the victims of the Fourth of July parade shooting in Highland Park, Ill. (Pat Nabong/Chicago Sun-Times via AP)
(Pat Nabong/Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

CHICAGO (AP) — Mourners on Friday remembered a woman who worked tirelessly at her synagogue and a gentle man who loved art in the first formal services to be held for the seven people killed by the gunman who opened fire on a July Fourth parade.

Synagogue members at North Shore Congregation Israel near the Chicago suburb of Highland Park described 63-year-old Jacquelyn Sundheim as a dedicated member of their community who coordinated events and and taught preschool classes, smiling all along and constantly checking on other staff members.

“We are horrified,” Rabbi Wendi Geffen said. “We are enraged, sickened, aggrieved, inconsolable for the terror that has befallen us and robbed us of Jacki.”

But Geffen and other speakers urged the people filling the synagogue to focus on Sundheim’s life — her commitment to her husband, Bruce, and daughter, Leah, the pleasure she took in knitting and her attention to detail when planning bat or bar mitzahs, weddings or funerals.

Her daughter had another request: to use the pain, fear and rage caused by her mother’s death to make the world better, in small thoughts and actions.

“I want you to laugh,” she said, holding back tears. “I want you to each and every day put a little more joy and kindness into this world. Do not let this sadness, this fear, rage turn you bitter towards our world. The world is darker without my mom in it, and it’s up to us now to fill it with a little extra laughter.”

Mourners also filled the Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation in Evanston to support the family of 88-year-old Stephen Straus, who was eulogized as a funny father and grandfather who loved reading and art and still rode the train five days a week to the downtown Chicago office where he worked as a financial adviser.

Son Jonathan described Straus as “truly to his core, just a sweet, generous person” while his other son, Peter, thanked his dad for instilling a love of the “zany” including Mel Brooks.

Jonathan Straus said learning of his father’s death from a doctor at a hospital “was the worst moment of my life.”

“Thinking about what a good, giving, loving person he was, it makes the cruelty and the horror of his death that much harder to take,” he said. “When I see pictures of him … it really just sweeps over me, what we’ve lost, who I lost, my best friend ever.”

A 2020 study by Brandeis University and the University of Chicago found Highland Park had among the Chicago region’s highest concentrations of Jewish residents — a fact reflected by the half-dozen or more synagogues in the suburb or just outside it. Many local restaurants offer kosher food options.

Neighboring Highwood is home to a large Hispanic population, and Mexican authorities have said two men killed at the parade were natives of the country.

Friends and family of 78-year-old Nicolas Toledo-Zaragoza plan to remember him Friday afternoon. Services for 69-year-old Eduardo Uvaldo are scheduled for Saturday.

Police have repeatedly said that victims were shot randomly and that the assailant had no racial or religious motivation.

Funeral details for the remaining victims have not been made public. Authorities have identified them as 35-year-old Irina McCarthy and 37-year-old Kevin McCarthy, who were attending the parade with their 2-year-old son, and 64-year-old Katherine Goldstein, a mother of two.

The accused gunman, Robert E. Crimo III, has been charged with seven counts of first-degree murder. Prosecutors expect to bring more charges representing the more than 30 people were wounded in the assault.

Investigators have said the suspect, who lived in neighboring Highwood, legally purchased five weapons and planned the attack for weeks before he climbed to the roof of a business along the parade route and opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle.

Investigators reported that Crimo fled the parade by blending in with the fleeing crowd, then drove to the Madison, Wisconsin, area, where he contemplated a second attack. He returned to the Highland Park area, and his car was spotted by police.

Questions remain about whether Crimo should have been able to legally purchase firearms in Illinois. Illinois State Police officials have defended the approval of his gun license in December 2019, months after police received reports that he had made suicidal and violent threats.

___

Associated Press Writer Michael Tarm contributed to this report.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

Saginaw Police K9 Cigan sits behind a table with evidence found inside a stolen car. (WNEM)...
Anna Kathman

Stolen vehicle, multiple drugs located by Michigan K9 officer

Saginaw Police said two suspects are behind bars after a stolen vehicle was located during a traffic stop by a K9 officer.
16 hours ago
A 29-year old woman has been arrested after allegedly posing as a teenager and attending classes at...
Kiely Westhoff and Zoe Sottile, CNN

29-year-old woman posed as high school teen facing charges in New Jersey, police say

A 29-year-old New Jersey woman is facing charges over claims she used false government documents in a ploy to pose as a teenager at a high school, according to police.
16 hours ago
Former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during an election night event at Mar-a-Lago on November ...
Meg Kinnard and Michelle L. Price

Trump says beating of Nichols ‘never should have happened’

Former President Donald Trump says the footage of the brutal beating of Tyre Nichols by five Memphis police officers is “horrible” and that the attack “never should have happened.”
2 days ago
One the of climbers in the training camp climbing a wall. (KSL-TV's Alex Cabrero)...
Alex Cabrero

USA Climbing Camp for Paris 2024 begins in Salt Lake City

As the Summer 2024 Olympic Games draws closer, those athletes looking to participate begin their training. 
2 days ago
MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE - SEPTEMBER 7:  Police investigate the scene of a reported carjacking reportedly...
Adrian Sainz

Memphis police disband unit that fatally beat Tyre Nichols

The Memphis Police Department has disbanded the special unit whose officers beat to death motorist Tyre Nichols
2 days ago
Demonstrators participate in a protest against the police killing of Tyre Nichols on January 27, 20...
Adrian Sainz, Associated Press

Memphis authorities release video in Tyre Nichols’ death

Video showing five Memphis officers beating Tyre Nichols, a Black man, has been made public.
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t Let a Ransomware Attack Get You Down | Protect Your Workplace Today with Cyber Insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
July 4 victims remembered for dedication to faith, family