Highland Park shooting: Witness describes efforts to save children, recounts tragedy

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A local who witnessed the July 4 parade shooting near Chicago recounted his experience and described the efforts adults made to save children.

“I was sitting right there,” Brad Kramer told Fox News. “Next thing I know people are diving on top of me, throwing their kids underneath.”

A gunman shot into the July 4 parade, killing six and injuring more than 30. Robert “Bobby” E. Crimo III was arrested as a person of interest in the shooting. 

Several children were injured in the shooting, including one as young as 8, according to local reports.

HIGHLAND PARK ATTACK: WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THE 4TH OF JULY PARADE SHOOTING VICTIMS

A witness to the Highland Park attack wipes away tears as he recounts the shooting.

A witness to the Highland Park attack wipes away tears as he recounts the shooting.
(Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)

“The first thing was, save the kids,” Kramer told Fox News. “Grab the kids.”

Kramer was picking up his lawn chairs he left at the scene of the shooting as he described the attack to Fox News on Tuesday morning. He occasionally got choked up and paused to wipe tears.

A witness to the July 4 shooting at a parade near Chicago points to where he was at the time of the shooting.

A witness to the July 4 shooting at a parade near Chicago points to where he was at the time of the shooting.
(Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)

“I was singing along to the music, and then in a split second people were running,” he said, adding that he didn’t hear the gunshots “because the marching band was in front of us.”

He told Fox News a man came through waving his arm, then the band began running downhill carrying their instruments.

HIGHLAND PARK MAYOR: ROBERT CRIMO III’S WEAPON WAS ‘LEGALLY OBTAINED’

Law enforcement works the scene after a mass shooting at a July 4 parade near Chicago.

Law enforcement works the scene after a mass shooting at a July 4 parade near Chicago.
(Photo by Jim Vondruska/Getty Images)

A man dove on top of Kramer, throwing his daughter underneath Kramer’s lawn chair.

“What’s going on?” Kramer asked the man, two inches from his face. The man responded: “Active shooter.”

HIGHLAND PARK SHOOTING: DICK DURBIN CALLS ON VOTERS TO ELECT PRO-GUN CONTROL POLITICIANS AFTER PARADE ATTACK

Children's sneakers and sunscreen lay next to lawn chairs left behind following the Highland Park Independence Day parade shooting.

Children’s sneakers and sunscreen lay next to lawn chairs left behind following the Highland Park Independence Day parade shooting.
(Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)

“Literally, they’re jumping on top of the kids in case there were gunshots coming down,” Kramer told Fox News.

A witness to the Highland Park shooting recounts the tragedy as he picks up items he left behind.

A witness to the Highland Park shooting recounts the tragedy as he picks up items he left behind.
(Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)

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Kramer said he and others rushed to get children into a nearby vestibule, but there wasn’t enough room for the adults.

Police deploy after gunfire erupted at a July 4 shooting at a parade near Chicago in Highland Park, Illinois. ABC affiliate WLS/ABC7 via REUTERS     NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES. MANDATORY CREDIT     TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Police deploy after gunfire erupted at a July 4 shooting at a parade near Chicago in Highland Park, Illinois. ABC affiliate WLS/ABC7 via REUTERS     NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES. MANDATORY CREDIT     TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
(ABC affiliate WLS/ABC7 via REUTERS)

“The entire crowd could have been armed, and it wouldn’t have made a difference,” Kramer told Fox News. “When you go home and sit and think about it, it’s the assault rifle. Every single time there’s a shooting, it’s the assault rifle.”

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