National Wrestling Alliance hosts show for Cooper Roberts, child paralyzed in Highland Park shooting

ByMaher Kawash WLS logo
Sunday, July 9, 2023
NWA hosts show for 9-year-old boy paralyzed in Highland Park shooting
The National Wrestling Alliance hosted a show for 9-year-old Highland Park mass shooting survivor Cooper Roberts.

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. (WLS) -- There was a moment of pure joy for 9-year-old Cooper Roberts on Saturday afternoon.

For a few hours, the youngest victim of last year's Fourth of July parade shooting in Highland Park got to enjoy the show the National Wrestling Alliance hosted just for him.

"Oh, my gosh, today has been one of those days you get to come and not be totally immersed in everything that is difficult and challenging and overwhelming," said Keeley Roberts, Cooper's mother.

SEE ALSO | Cooper Roberts update: Boy paralyzed in Highland Park shooting now 'tackling life head-on,' mom says

The last year has been a whirlwind for Cooper's family. It has included months of hospital stays and rehab treatments for Cooper, who is paralyzed from the waist down.

"He is doing really, really good. He is continuing to push through the physical issues he's continuing to deal with, but I think, most importantly, he's continuing to feel the love and support," Keeley said.

That love and support was on full display at the Highland Park Rec Center on Saturday, with rock star and founder of the National Wrestling Alliance, Billy Corgan, leading the way to raise thousands of dollars for Cooper's medical needs.

"In rock and roll, tell me that sometimes having a little bit of fun is the best medicine," Corgan said.

"What happened was certainly the worst of what we see in humanity sometimes, but this event has been about the best of what people can do," Keeley said.

Cooper loved every second of the show, with his twin brother and friends by his side.

"The fact that Cooper was there front row watching us and cheering us on, it's a really cool feeling," said NWA wrestler Missa Kate.

READ MORE | Highland Park shooting survivor Cooper Roberts, CPD Officer Danny Golden recognized for perseverance

All of it served as a reminder of how the community is moving forward together.

"You don't get to break us. You don't get to take away our life. You don't get to take away our happiness, our joy," Keeley said.

The excitement and fundraising will continue on Sunday as well. Another slate of matches will start at 2 p.m.