More than 300 pairs of children's shoes on display represent kids with prior DCFS contact who died

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WLS) -- More than 300 pairs of children's shoes were on display at the Illinois capitol Thursday. They represent the children who died from 2019 to 2021, and who had prior contact with DCFS.

RELATED: More than 100 children died over 1-year period despite contact with DCFS, new report says

The display was organized by a group that came together following the death of AJ Freund, who was killed by his parents roughly three years ago.

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Illinois House Republican leader Jim Durkin called the display "very emotional," saying it represented a horrible failure by the state.

The group that organized the display hopes it will have a greater impact simply hearing the number of children who have died.

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