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Vigil held for those affected by Waukesha Christmas parade tragedy

Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 2:37 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 22, 2021 at 10:21 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Wisconsin faith leaders will hold a prayer vigil Monday evening for the community to come together following the deaths of five people after a SUV plowed through the Waukesha Christmas Parade.

The Association of Waukesha Congregations will host the vigil at 5 p.m. at Cutler Park, according to the Waukesha Police Department. The Brookfield- Elm Grove Interfaith Network and the Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee will also assist with the event.

“It keeps replaying and honestly, I don’t think it’ll ever stop replaying,” DQ Smith, an off-duty first responder told NBC15 after the vigil. “We immediately went outside to assist, there were first responders there, there were nurses there, people on and off duty, whatever I could do to help. We need prayers for this city.”

Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly thanked members of the community for coming together, but acknowledged they have a long way to go.

“Each of us will play a part in helping our neighbors and community heal,” Reilley said on Facebook. “How that occurs will be up to us as individuals and as a community.”

The Waukesha Public Library will close at 4 p.m. so the public can park in their lot, police say. The Downtown South Street Parking Ramp will also offer free parking, as well as Les Paul Middle School, the lot across from Fire Station #1 and the City Lot #8 behind Taco Johns.

If you are experiencing emotional distress, the Waukesha Police Department asks people to call or text the Disaster Distress Helpline at 800-985-5990.

Officials added that there is a Friends and Family Resource Center set up for those affected by this tragedy from 2-6 p.m. Tuesday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday at Carroll University’s Campus Center ballroom.

Words from Mayor Shawn Reilly at tonight's vigil: Thank you all for being here for those injured and grieving. Last...

Posted by The City of Waukesha on Monday, November 22, 2021

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