WAUKESHA, Wis. - Children and adults alike are recovering from the horror and aftermath of the Waukesha Christmas Parade tragedy. FOX6 News spoke with the family of an 11-year-old who was struck by the SUV on Sunday afternoon, Nov. 21. She is bruised and scraped up, but she is home.
Yaretzi Bacerra-Montes was performing at the parade with her dance team, Xtreme.
"We just saw the girls fly, it’s like everyone just bursted. We didn’t know where she was," said Ketzally Bacerra-Montes. "It was just something that she always looked forward to."
"She loves to dance, she is so committed to it," said Laura Bacerra-Montes.
Yaretzi's family was waiting for her to approach when the SUV plowed into the dance team. Panic set in.
"I heard a lot of noise. I heard ‘bump bump.’ I just didn’t know what to do. I just ran looking for her," said Laura Bacerra-Montes.
"I was like, where is Yaretzi? All the girls were like, we don’t know," said Ketzally Bacerra-Montes.
"I’m looking for my daughter. I was … I’m sorry. It’s so hard," said Laura Bacerra-Montes. "I was relieved that she was there and relieved that I saw her eyes open."
The SUV hit the 11-year-old from behind. The family took shelter at a bakery until an ambulance arrived.
"We want answers as to why he did it. What was going through his mind that made it so easy," said Ketzally Bacerra-Montes.
The young dancer, who loves the holidays, is now home. Yaretzi is recovering from injuries to her head and back. Her family is inspired by her strength.
"It’s not something anyone ever expected at a Christmas parade. It’s something that we always went to. It’s never going to be the same again," said Laura Bacerra-Montes.
As the days go on, the 11-year-old is remembering more and more of what happened at the parade. Her family said they are grateful for community support as they all heal physically and emotionally.