Dr. Keely Roberts, Zion school superintendent, twin sons among those shot at Highland Park parade

8-year-old Cooper remains in critical condition after Highland Park, IL shooting, paralyzed from waist down

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Thursday, July 7, 2022
Boy, 8, paralyzed frm waist down after Highland Park shooting
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8-year-old Cooper Roberts remains in critical condition. He is now paralyzed from the waist down.

ZION, Ill. (WLS) -- A north suburban school superintendent and her twin sons were among those shot during Highland Park's Fourth of July parade Monday, a family spokesperson said Thursday. One of the boys has been paralyzed from the waist down.

Zion Elementary School District 6 Superintendent Dr. Keely Roberts and her 8-year-old twin sons, Cooper and Luke, were among the dozens shot Monday, the spokesperson said.

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Cooper is currently in critical condition, but remains stable. He can't breathe on his own yet, but under the close care of doctors is making small, incremental improvements.

"He's undergone several surgeries since Monday, including one last night in which doctors were finally able to close up his belly," said Tony Loizzi, friend of the family and colleague of Keely Roberts.

Luke has been treated for shrapnel wounds to a leg, was released from the hospital and is recuperating at home with his older sisters, who were not at the parade and uninjured.

Friends of the family have started a GoFundMe campaign to support medical needs.

According to the GoFundMe, Cooper was shot in the chest, and his spinal cord was severed.

He's at the University of Chicago's Comer Children's Hospital.

After being shot in the chest at the parade, he was airlifted there after being initially treated at another hospital near the incident.

A spokesperson confirmed Thursday evening the boy is paralyzed from the waist down.

A family spokesman said Cooper loves sports, especially baseball, and is a huge Milwaukee Brewers fan.

Roberts was shot twice in the leg and foot. She underwent two surgeries, and, after she learned of Cooper's condition, told doctors to discharge her or said she would walk out on her own.

Over $170,000 had been raised for the family as of Thursday afternoon.

At least 39 people were injured after police said a shooter opened fire on the parade from a rooftop.

The Zion District 6 Board president said active and retired superintendents from throughout the region have offered to help with short-term interim administrative assistance as the district determines the next best steps as Roberts and her family take the time they need to heal.

"For seven years in Zion District 6 and other area school districts for many years prior, Dr. Roberts has done everything she can to support the needs of students and families in our community. Now, she and her family need our help and support," she said in a statement. "Please continue to keep the Roberts Family and all those impacted by this tragedy in your thoughts."

Sun-Times Media contributed to this report.