Family and friends come together to pay tribute to Jacqueline Sundheim, Steven Strauss and Nicholas Toledo-Zaragoza.
“Do you know how I feel? Woe. Woe to all of us, woe to Highland Park, America,” said Lynn Weitz.
Services for 63-year-old Jacqueline Lovi Sundheim began at 11 am at the Israel North Shore Congregation, located at 1185 Sheridan Road in Glencoe.
“Today we will mourn together, and we will mourn together. But we will also be grateful to have shared Jackie’s life with her,” said Wendy Geffen, Senior Rabbi of the Israel North Shore Congregation. “She loved to have a good time. She hugged tightly. She had an amazing smile, she was fiercely protective and didn’t get in anyone’s way.”
Sundheim was a former schoolteacher and devoted parishioner and synagogue worker.
“Jackie’s life wasn’t long enough. There is an incalculable list of everything that should have been. We will never be able to count it. Her life was wonderful,” Geffen said.
Services in honor of 88-year-old Steven Strauss were held at 12:30 p.m. at the Reconstructionist Jewish Congregation, located at 303 Dodge Ave. in Evanston.
“He was just unbelievably, I mean extraordinarily sweet and kind person. Always interested in what you do, and just loved to share who you were and what you did, ”said his son Jonathan Strauss. “Every time you saw him, no matter what happened on his day, he always had this warm smile and he always greeted you warmly, and he was always really, really just down to earth sweet, generous person.”
Strauss was a beloved grandfather. His family said he was often seen at the Art Institute. He loved life and was active, riding the Meter downtown to work or cycling.
His family said he was always interested in others first.
Jonathan Straus said he knew his father still had a few good years left.
The funeral service for 78-year-old Nicholas of Toledo-Zaragoza will take place from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the Iglesia Emanuel, located at 1:00 pm W 10th St. in Waukegan.
Toledo-Zaragoza retired and lived in Mexico. He was in the area visiting family when he was killed.
He was sitting in a wheelchair between his son and nephew when he was shot several times.
His son and family friend were also shot but survived.
Toledo Zaragoza’s body will be taken to his hometown in Mexico for his final resting place.
He is survived by his children, grandchildren and, according to his family, many close friends.
One of them is a woman working at Highland Park Starbucks who said she came to support her friends, the grandchildren of Toledo.
This is the victim’s second funeral attended by Jaliza Monchivais and she said that even though she did not parade with her daughters as she had planned, she knew three people who were shot dead.
Monchivisa said her attempt to support victims, including Starbucks donating coffee to a Toledo-Zaragoza family, is just a small effort she wanted to make.
“It’s actually a very traumatic and ill-conceived experience,” she said. “It’s not easy to get through what we’ve been through and keep supplying the community. That’s what keeps me going.”
Alan Castillo was with Toledo-Zaragoza at the parade. He was shot in the back as the shooting started.
“I hit the floor. I’m like, “I got hit, I got hit.” That’s what I yelled at my girlfriend,” Castillo said. “I feel very lucky and unlucky because I’m going through this.”
Meanwhile, memorials continue to grow near the shooting site as the community rallies to help each other heal.
A large crowd gathered Thursday night for a moving candlelight vigil in Sunset Park.
“It’s a different type of grief; it is traumatic grief that most people never experience,” said Linda Davis, who witnessed the shooting on Monday.
“It’s just devastating to see my community go through this pain,” said Jordana Hozman, vigil co-organizer and North Shore March for our Lives participant.
Residents shared stories of being at the parade when shots were fired on the Fourth of July and fleeing.
Highland Park residents and businesses are trying to rally and support each other as much as possible.
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