How to help Waukesha tragedy victims: Multiple fundraisers launched for affected families
Five people were killed and more than 40 people injured after an SUV plowed through the crowd at a holiday parade in Waukesha, Wisconsin on Sunday, November 21. The identities of the victims of the tragedy have not been revealed by the police yet. Authorities have said that they are still in the process of notifying the next of kin of the victims. Aside from what little is known, children were also among those struck by the car.
"Today we experienced a horrible, senseless tragedy. I walked in the parade at the beginning," Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly said at a news conference. "I saw the happy children sitting on the curb I saw happy parents behind their children. I can still see the smiling faces. A parade is a celebration for our community." He added, "Today our community faced for tragedy in what should have been a community celebration. I'm deeply saddened to know that so many in our community went to a parade but ended up dealing with injury and heartache." Waukesha Police Chief Dan Thompson called it a "very tragic incident, very chaotic."
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Who were the victims?
WAUKESHA MOURNING: Wisconsin @GovEvers orders flags fly at half-staff today and on days of each victim’s funeral. pic.twitter.com/NDcxjBuktM— Jason Calvi (@JasonCalvi) November 22, 2021
In the aftermath of the tragedy, 11 adults and 12 pediatric patients were transported to six hospitals in the area, said Fire Chief Steven Howard. Children's Wisconsin, a health care system operating two hospitals in the state, said that it took in 15 patients from the incident "with no reported fatalities at our hospital at that time."
According to the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, one of its Catholic priests, multiple parishioners and Waukesha Catholic schoolchildren were among those injured. "Please join us in prayer for all those involved, their families, and those who are traumatized from witnessing the horrible scene," Archdiocese spokesperson Sandra Peterson said in a statement. Members of the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies, a dance troupe made up of women between the ages of early fifties to mid-seventies, where also "impacted by the incident. The group shared on Facebook that, "Members of the group and volunteers were impacted and we are waiting for word on their conditions. Please keep the Grannies, all those injured, and all those who witnessed this horrible event in your thoughts and prayers."
#Waukesha press conference victim update pic.twitter.com/FN40D1UDXj— oak_tree_upheaval (@oaktreeupheaval) November 22, 2021
Groups like Waukesha Xtreme Dance and the Catholic Community of Waukesha also issued statements saying members of their groups who were marching in the parade at the time of impact. According to Monica Cardenas, the director of stewardship and communication of the Catholic Community of Waukesha, several parishioners have been injured and are hospitalized.
How to help the victims of Waukesha tragedy?
A number of fundraisers have been set up for the families of the victims of the Waukesha tragedy, one of them being a GoFundMe page, set up by Phillip Petersen. "All donations from this fundraiser will go to the school of South Waukesha, the Waukesha Xtreme Dance Team, and the Dancing Grandmas group which were three organizations that had members who were injured in this horrific incident. Please note that everything will be conducted in a very transparent process with the process of funds being recorded via the gofundme page as well as my personal social media Twitter account @azpolitico22," the fundraiser said. So far $1,567 has been raised of a $5,000 goal.
https://t.co/ZwE4SnOlyZ GiveSendGo set up a campaign Please donate and share!— GiveSendGo (@GiveSendGo) November 22, 2021
Another has been set up at GiveSendGo with a target of reaching $10,000. So far only a little over $200 has been contributed. "At GiveSendGo we were just alerted to the tragedy of the recent events in Waukesha WI. We will be teaming with a local organization on the ground to bring help and hope to any families affected by this horrible event. We will send updates as the story unfolds. Thank you all for your support for the victims and their families," the campaign says.
The Waukesha County Community Foundation, and United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County have joined together to create the “United for Waukesha Community Fund.” This fund will support the needs of the families impacted from Sunday’s tragic incident at the annual Waukesha Christmas Parade. You can donate here.
Waukesha County Community Foundation and United Way have joined together to create the “United for Waukesha Community Fund.” This fund will support the needs of the families impacted by tragic incident at the Christmas Parade. https://t.co/QRhntGV1sY #Waukesha— cityofwaukesha (@CityofWaukesha) November 22, 2021
You can also help the victims by donating blood. If you are a local resident, click here to find blood donating centers near you and information on how you can schedule an appointment.
The city has requested any items set aside for a temporary memorial to be placed at Veterans Park. On Nov 21, the Catholic Community of Waukesha held a prayer service for the victims of the tragedy. Catholic Memorial High School is also hosting a combined community prayer service on Nov 22 afternoon. The city also advised anyone who may need to talk with someone about the experience of the scene to call 211.