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2-Year-Old Who Lost His Parents In Highland Park Shooting Was Shielded By His Father

Photo: Facebook/GoFundMe/Marchello7/Shutterstock
Aiden McCarthy, Irina and Kevin McCarthy, Highland Park

A fundraiser that was created to help a toddler whose parents were killed in the July 4 Highland Park shooting has raised well over $2 million since launching on July 5.

Aiden McCarthy, 2, was saved from the gunfire after his father, Kevin McCarthy, 37, covered his son with his body after the suspect opened fire from a rooftop onto a crowd in Highland Park, Illinois.

The toddler "was pulled from underneath his father, who was still bleeding, by good Samaritans," Senator Tammy Duckworth told CNN. "Then, they went to work on his dad because his dad's leg was still bleeding."

Tragically, both of Aiden's parents, Irina and Kevin McCarthy, died in the Highland Park shooting.

Kevin and his wife, Irina, 35, were among those killed in the mass shooting as Aiden ended up being separated from his parents amidst the chaos.

RELATED: Father Of Highland Park Shooting Suspect Liked Tweet Supporting Second Amendment Days After Uvalde Massacre

He was later found by a couple, Dana and Greg Ring, who told CBS Chicago that they found Aiden with a stranger, who was in shock, and took the toddler with them until a Highland Park police detective picked him up and reunited him with his grandparents.

A GoFundMe for Aiden is raising funds for his future.

As of July 6, the GoFundMe campaign has raised over $2.2 million, with donations still pouring in for Aiden and his family.

"At two years old, Aiden is left in the unthinkable position; to grow up without his parents," Irina Colon, the campaign organizer, wrote in the description.

RELATED: Sleuths Say Highland Park Shooting Suspect's Face Tattoos May Have Predicted July 4 Parade Attack

Aiden's grandfather, Michael Levberg, told the Chicago Tribune that when he picked up his grandson from the police station, he was confused about where his parents were.

"When I picked him up, he said, 'Are Mommy and Daddy coming soon?'" Levberg said. "He doesn't understand."

"Aiden will be cared for by his loving family and he will have a long road ahead to heal, find stability, and ultimately navigate life as an orphan," the campaign reads.

"He is surrounded by a community of friends and extended family that will embrace him with love, and any means available to ensure he has everything he needs as he grows."

All of the money raised will be given to support Aiden "and his caregivers who will be tasked with raising, caring for, and supporting Aiden as he and his support system embark on this unexpected journey."

Both Kevin and Irina McCarthy had been looking forward to the July 4 parade, and going to take Aiden with them, Levberg told the Chicago Sun-Times.

“They were crazy about their child,” he said, his voice breaking. “They were planning two.”

RELATED: He Stopped A Gunman During A Mass Shooting — The Cops Killed Him Anyway

Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Keep up with her on Instagram and Twitter.

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