They died celebrating the approaching holidays and reveling in the joy that this time of year is supposed to bring.

Jane Kulich was walking alongside a float in the 58th annual holiday parade in Waukesha, Wis., handing out candy to children. Tamara Durand was with a group of grandmothers in the parade, dancing with them for the first time. Virginia “Ginny” Sorenson and Leanna Owen were there too, longtime veterans of the Milwaukee Dancing Grannies. And Wilhelm Hospel was probably nearby, a proud stage spouse to one of the dancers.

All were killed Sunday when a red SUV plowed through the parade. The suspected driver, Darrell Brooks, is in custody. On Tuesday evening, a prosecutor said that a sixth victim, a child, had died.

As the city grieved, a memorial was erected in Waukesha’s Cutler Park on Monday, a collection of white crosses, flowers and candles. City officials shared a photo of the memorial Tuesday on the city’s main Facebook page with the caption: “Our hearts are heavy.”

Here are the stories of those killed:

Jane Kulich, 52

The topic of the sermon at Bridge Church in Waukesha was couples throughout history who were better together. Listening from the pews, John and Jane Kulich snuggled in close to one another. They had been together for 32 years, married for 22, and had three children and three grandchildren.

“I rubbed her shoulder. She rubbed my knee. We looked at each other,” John Kulich said. “We knew that that sermon was about us and for us.”

On Sunday afternoon, Jane Kulich went downtown for the city’s annual Christmas parade. She was a teller at Citizens Bank, and she and her fellow employees were there to distribute candy to children.

“Now,” John said Monday through tears, “there is no us.”

John and Jane had met over three decades ago, when he was new to Wisconsin.

“I knew she was the girl I wanted to marry from that day,” he said of the Milwaukee native. “I told the people I was with, and they thought I was crazy.”

A month later, they had a date at a German restaurant. He proposed. She accepted.

Children followed: first a girl, then twins.

He worked in construction, and the hours were long. They endured a rough spot in their marriage, as couples often do, but came back together stronger than ever, John said.

“We were having a great life,” he said. “She was the happiest she’d ever been.”

Her kids and grandkids gave her special joy: The twins are 17, and their daughter is now 29, with three kids of her own. Every week, there was game night, three generations gathered around the table, playing and laughing.

“My mother was a wonderful, beautiful soul. She lit up everyone’s lives,” said Taylor Smith, Jane Kulich’s daughter, in a statement. “She was dedicated, motivated and comforting. One of the best people to ever walk this Earth.”

“We will miss her so much. She was taken from us way too soon,” she said.

Jane Kulich loved working at the bank and was working toward becoming a personal banker, her husband said.

“She had found her niche,” John Kulich said. “She was working hard, doing the classes. Doing the extra things, too.”

That included appearing in the holiday parade with her co-workers.

John Kulich got a call late Sunday afternoon from his wife’s boss: She had been hit by a car.

He raced to the hospital, along with their kids, where they found chaos as relatives frantically looked for loved ones. They were too late: Jane had already died.

“Everybody loved Jane,” John said. “I loved her with all my heart.”

(A friend has set up a GoFundMe for the family.)

Tamara Durand, 52

David and Tamara Durand knew each other since high school, when she was a cheerleader.

“She danced her way through life, even if there was no music,” David Durand said.

It was how she lived her life. “She’s dynamic, energetic, beautiful, big-hearted,” he said of his wife of eight years.

“Everybody would talk about her smile,” he said.

Tamara volunteered as a chaplain at the hospital, watched her grandchild four days a week so her daughter could attend college, and she ran every day — “whether it was five degrees below zero or 85 degrees,” her husband said.

When they got married, Tamara drew David into the world of dance — even though “she was a good dancer, and I wasn’t,” David said. They often went to live showings of “Dancing with the Stars,” and she watched nearly all of the dance-related television shows, with him by her side. She danced as much as she could — at 52, she was the youngest member of the Dancing Grannies.

It was her first performance with them. And her last.

“She was beautiful,” David Durand said. “She brought energy into every room she walked in.”

Leanna “Lee” Owen, 71

Chris Owen was standing on the side of the road with his two kids Sunday, waiting for his mom to pass by in the parade. But then a red vehicle came speeding through, followed by the police. Then everyone was told to leave.

He got ahold of everyone except for one person.

“I was trying to call her and text her on my way back,” Owen said. “Obviously we never heard from her.”

Leanna “Lee” Owen raised Chris and his brother Matt in a home that kept its doors open to their friends and neighbors. Social and loving, she was seen as a second mom to many of those kids.

“They all just loved her,” he said.

Chris Owen recalled with fondness the times that the brothers had friends over at the house while she was at work — something they were not allowed to do.

“She came home early and caught us, and she was so polite to all my friends, asking how they’re doing and how their parents are doing,” Chris Owen said. But “as soon as the last one was out the door, I’d get grounded and sent to my room.”

While they were growing up, Lee Owen had a few professions, including as an accountant and an accountant manager, her last job.

David Schmidt, who owns the two 32-unit buildings Owen managed, said she was full of kindness for her tenants.

“She didn’t have a mean bone in her body. She was the nicest lady,” Schmidt said. “She was the glue that kept that apartment complex running for us.”

It was that love of people that led her to joining the Dancing Grannies several years ago. The other women became like sisters to her, Chris Owen said. They would often go out to eat together after practices and performances.

Lee Owen was a Catholic, a Packers fan and an animal lover who rescued pets that had trouble finding homes.

Her dog Oscar is an English bulldog with a skin condition that resulted in hair loss, which means he has to wear a T-shirt. In the winters, he wears a coat.

She also owned three cats, including one that was rescued from a farm. But that was who she was — someone who always wanted to help those that needed it, those close to her said.

“She would walk around her apartment building with Oscar, this loud, mangy, English bulldog” in a T-shirt, Chris recalled, laughing. “The dogs she had were always crazy and weird, and you had to be careful around them. But she loved them.”

Chris spent time with her on Friday and Saturday. He was visiting from Istanbul, where he now lives. When they last spoke, he said she reminded him about the parade on Sunday.

“She was kind, above all else. She tried to help people any way she could,” Chris said. “She was a joy to be around.”

Virginia “Ginny” Sorenson, 79

David Sorenson was waiting in his car at the end of the city parade for his wife, Virginia Sorenson, to arrive. But she never did.

Virginia “Ginny” Sorenson was killed while holding a banner near the back of the Dancing Grannies, her husband told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

She was the group instructor, and she threw herself into the work despite having a bad hip and back.

“What did she like about it? Everything,” David Sorenson told the Journal Sentinel. “She liked the instructing. She liked the dancing and the camaraderie of the women. She liked to perform.”

A registered nurse, she worked part time in medical records and spent the rest of her time caring for their animals, which included horses, chickens, dogs and cats, according to the Journal Sentinel.

The two had been married for 56 years. They first met at church and later had three children together, which led to six grandchildren, who often marched alongside the Dancing Grannies.

“She taught me to do the cancan,” her husband told the Journal Sentinel.

The family has started a GoFundMe for her funeral and memorial costs.

“It is beyond devastating to have lost our sweet Ginny in such a vile manner,” the family posted on the site.

She was a caregiver for patients, family and her beloved pets. They said on the site that she often reminded them: “Angels watch over you.”

“She spent her last moments celebrating the beauty of life with her close friends when God called her to come home,” they said on the site. “We’ll forever be grateful for having the time we did with her.”

Wilhelm “Bill” Hospel, 81

Wilhelm Hospel, who was known as “Bill,” was the husband of Lola Hospel, a former dancing granny who had retired from the group in 2020. Still, like many of those involved, Lola had continued to volunteer with the dance troupe, according to Jan Kwiatkowski, a longtime group member who sat out this parade season.

Wilhelm was one of several husbands who often joined their wives at the parades. Some drove shuttles, ferrying the women to and from the parade route. Wilhelm frequently walked with the women as they performed in the parade, carrying water and supplies and often playing the role of proud stage spouse — taking photos and videos of the women as they performed.

Wilhelm didn’t have a costume, Kwiakowski said “but he was part of the family.”

Jackson Sparks, 8

Jackson Sparks, who lived in the neighboring town of Mukwonago, had a wonderful smile and a love of baseball, according to his LifePoint Sunday school teacher Tara Bollmann.

The third-grader was marching in the annual parade with his baseball team, the Waukesha Blazers, on Sunday before he and his 12-year-old brother, Tucker, were struck by the SUV.

Waukesha Blazers President Jeff Rogers called Jackson “a sweet, talented boy who was a joy to coach.”

“He was an awesome utility player and played on the Blazers Wolfpack team. Jackson was sweet and tenderhearted with a contagious smile,” he said. “He was the little guy on the team that everyone supported. You couldn’t help but love him.”

Bollmann, who knew Jackson from infancy, and members of their church prayed over a blanket that would be one of the last to envelop him in warmth before he died with his loving parents by his side.

“We took [the blanket] to Jackson last night in hopes a miracle would take place,” Bollmann said.

A family member set up a GoFundMe page to help cover the Sparks’s medical expenses. Tucker is recovering from road rash and a fractured skull.

María Luisa Paúl in Lakeville, Minn., contributed to this report.