DUPAGE COUNTY, Ill. — A man who was shot and killed in a shooting that left 22 others injured in Willowbrook Township after a celebration for Juneteenth has been identified.
The deceased victim was identified as 31-year-old Reginald Meadows from Willowbrook. He suffered a gunshot wound to the abdomen, the DuPage County Coroner’s Office said.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help his family pay for funeral costs, and provide a financial safety net for his two children.
A group of people were peacefully gathering around 12:30 a.m. near Route 83 and Honeysuckle Rose Lane when shots were fired.
An unknown number of individuals fired shots from multiple weapons in the crowd, the sheriff’s office said.
According to Battalion Chief Joe Ostrander with the Tri-State Fire Protection District, 12 ambulances were brought to the scene. In total, 10 people were transported from the scene to area hospitals, with injuries ranging from graze wounds to more serious gunshot wounds.
On Sunday afternoon, the sheriff’s office said at least 22 injured were shot and one person was fatally wounded. The identities and conditions of the victims have not been released yet.
Some people self-transported to local hospitals.
Officers reportedly applied tourniquets to victims at the scene, Ostrander said.
Officials haven’t shared whether any suspects are in custody in connection with the shooting or how many alleged shooters were involved. They also said the motive is not clear at this time.
“We’re right up the street and to know that’s what happened while I was just reading a book and didn’t know anything about it, is very nerve-wracking,” Nicole Kozney said.
Kozney said she heard the helicopter overhead and decided to walk down to the scene early Sunday morning.
“They had everything closed, no one could get through. There was just tons of ambulances. It was crazy; it was hectic,” Kozney said.
Witnesses said a large group was gathered in the parking lot of a strip mall for a Juneteenth celebration when gunfire erupted.
“We were all just out and next thing you know shots just kept on going off and everybody ran. It was chaos,” Craig Lottie said.
“We just heard shooting coming from behind us, so we dropped down. It just kept going,” Markeshia Avery said. “After that, we literally scattered away and just started trying to check on people.”
MERIT, the Metropolitan Emergency Response and Investigations Team, is involved in this investigation. Hours after the shooting, investigators remained on scene, photographing evidence, and looking into the circumstances surrounding the shooting.
“We usually have a small little get-together and it’s usually always laid back, peaceful and I don’t know what happened,” Lottie said. “Anything could have happened. We were all out, having a good time.”
Several neighbors said they saw a large group gathered late Saturday night and described the parking lot as packed with vehicles and people.
“There was probably 150 cars or so, all the way from one end of the parking lot to the next,” said Rick Wagner, who lives three houses up from where the shooting happened.
Wagner said he has expressed concerns to officials in the past about large groups gathering in the parking lot of this business over the last few years.
He said large amounts of trash have been left behind, including empty liquor bottles littered across the lot.
“I’ve talked to the police in the past; DuPage County and Burr Ridge,” Wagner said. “Last year we were told they could do everything they could to prevent this from happening again. It happens like last few years every Juneteenth celebration and then the Fourth of July.”
“I’m heartbroken to see the news from Willowbrook this morning,” U.S. Rep. Sean Casten, D-IL 6, said in a statement. “We live in a tragic reality where you cannot go to school, go to the grocery store, go to your place of worship, or celebrate holidays like the Fourth of July or Juneteenth without fear of being shot. Change is needed – we cannot allow this to be the status quo.”
The sheriff’s office is asking anyone with information on the shooting to call 630-407-2400.