Jul 7, 2022
$2.8M Raised For Aiden McCarthy, Child Orphaned In Highland Park Transcript
Two-year-old Aiden McCarthy was orphaned by Monday’s Highland Park Fourth of July parade shooting. Read the transcript here.
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He’s emerged as an emblem of Highland Park’s tremendous loss on July 4th. A two year old boy, Aidan McCarthy, effectively orphaned by Monday’s massacre, his parents, Kevin and Irena among the seven people killed along the parade route. Witnesses say Kevin died trying to protect his son.
Speaker 2: (00:19)
I mean, it just takes your breath away, like the wind got knocked out of you.
Irina and Tony Cologne are part of the McCarthy’s extended family and started a GoFundMe page to support him and the caregivers who will be tasked with raising, caring for and supporting Aidan. They sat down with NBC’s Tom Yamas.
Speaker 2: (00:37)
I think it just occurred to us right away, like right away. What can we do? What’s going to actually help this family. Prayers and all that are fine, great. Food, yeah, sure. But what’s ultimately going to help them? And it’s GoFundMe, a hundred percent.
The page has raised more than 2.8 million dollars in a stunning outpouring of help from a world touched by a community sorrow and a father’s final heroic act.
Speaker 3: (01:00)
His dad did everything he could to protect his son and was successful in that.
NBC news spoke with Tom Brooks who spotted the two year old moments after the gunfire, beneath his limp father, he says he had that kid in his arms and his final act of his life was bravery. He fell with his son underneath him. It was intentional. This gentleman is a hero. This morning, tributes pouring in for the couple, both graduates of DePaul University in Chicago with degrees in finance. Irina was an only child, according to the Chicago Sun Times. Her father, who immigrated from Russia, telling the outlet, she was the love of my life. A friend calling her an amazing person, adding Kevin was such a kind person who loved to make people laugh. He kept telling me how he wanted a big family and how much it meant to him. Monday’s violence shattering that dream, but a community determined to pick up the pieces in its wake.
Speaker 4: (01:55)
Emily, there’s so many layers to this story, but there’s the man, Tom Brooks who actually saw Aiden’s dad on top of him and had a chance to share a couple of moments before he passed.
Yeah, that’s right. Tom Brooks says before the boy was guided away from the scene, he told the bleeding father that his son was safe. The father wasn’t responsive, but Brooks is convinced he heard him perhaps a moment of relief in Kevin McCarthy’s final moment.
Speaker 5: (02:20)
Had to have been. Have to have been.
Speaker 4: (02:22)
Thank you, Emily. Thank you so much.
Speaker 6: (02:26)
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