HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. — Residents of Highland Park bracing for next week’s 4th of July holiday, which marks the one-year-anniversary of the mass shooting.
But the community is somehow finding a way to stand strong while the victim’s families are facing a difficult few days as we draw closer to the anniversary.
Among those who suffered harm is the family of Cooper Roberts, the courageous little boy who was left paralyzed following the mass shooting.
9-year-old Cooper, despite being paralyzed from the waist down with the help of specialized equipment, playing tennis, his mom says. While preparing for a national championship competition for adaptive swimmers.
But Keely Roberts, still struggling to come to terms with the tragic 4th of July shooting in Highland Park where seven people died and 48 others were injured. While looking ahead to the future, the Roberts family are facing an enormous challenge.
“And the beauty of that is the love,” Highland Park business owner Marlena Jayatilake said. “The love that people showed to one another.”
Their friends stepping in to establish a second GoFundMe page. Spreading the love and peace, like so many in this north suburban community.
Where “Highland Park Strong” is more than just a slogan. Giving people a way to cope with the loss and sorrow.
“To see the community come together for all the families that were injured and harmed and hurt. That’s really wonderful to see.”
The tenderness and compassion for one another inspiring others. Who see the tremendous courage of a brace little boy.
“He’s absolutely resilient and that’s huge,” Highland Park merchant Tony Brosio said.
“Let’s do a good deed,” Highland Park visitor Leibel Paltiel said. “Let’s do something to bring more goodness into the world.”
The Roberts family are thankful that Cooper and twin brother Luke, who suffers shrapnel wounds from that terrible day, are alive today.
For more information on the Roberts family GoFundMe page, click here.
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