Waukesha parade victim had previously undiagnosed cancer, husband says

Days after the deadly Waukesha parade crash, the husband of one of the women killed learned from a medical examiner that she had previously undiagnosed uterine cancer. 

“I was happy to hear that I could at least give my children the thought that maybe a lot of suffering was avoided,” John Kulich told “CBS Mornings” lead national correspondent David Begnaud. “At least give my children the thought that, well, maybe God took her so she didn’t have to suffer. And if I could just leave them with that.”  

His wife, Jane, was one of the six people killed when 39-year-old Darrell Brooks plowed his SUV into the crowd on Sunday. She was 52 years old.

Kulich remembered his wife as “a beautiful person.”

“Not only to us, but to everyone she met,” he said. “I never heard a bad word about her. Everyone who met her always loved her.”

Kulich said Jane was an organ donor and that he hoped knowing her organs could help someone else would provide his children with solace. “I’m just trying to let them see the bright side because I know that’s what Jane would want,” he said.  

“She had an interesting view on things and that everything was for a reason,” Kulich said. “That was something she said constantly when anything bad would happen: ‘Well, things happen for a reason’ and we never know what the reason is. And so when I heard [the cancer diagnosis], I wanted to say, well maybe this is the reason. I don’t know. But I’d like to think that.” 

Kulich said his last day with Jane began at church listening to a sermon about great couples of the world and how they are better together.

“So I pulled her close and started rubbing her arm and she started rubbing my knee. She knew what I meant, and we knew that that was a word from God for us,” he said.

Roughly six hours later, Jane was at the parade with colleagues from the bank where she worked when she was run down.

“Her whole world was her family. And she was good at it, really good at it. She was the rock that held us together, the stable force,” Kulich said.

She was a grandmother of three and a mother of three. 

“The one thing I can say about her that I can’t say about anybody else is that I’ve never heard her say a bad word even about the people she doesn’t like,” her son, Jacob, said.

John Kulich is now preparing to bury his bride of 22 years.

“We were a team. That was my partner. I don’t know if I’m, I’m not capable of doing all this by myself,” he said. “I needed her. I’ve always needed her and they need her, too.”

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