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Vigil planned Monday night to mark one year since Danforth shooting

Last Updated Jul 22, 2019 at 6:54 pm EST

Torontonians will be gathering Monday night to remember the victims of a mass shooting on the Danforth last summer.

The vigil is set to begin at 8:51 p.m. at Alexander the Great Parkette, marking one year since the tragedy, which left two people dead and 13 others injured.

The shooting happened on a busy stretch of Danforth Avenue when a lone gunman went on a shooting rampage before killing himself.

Eighteen-year-old Reese Fallon and 10-year-old Julianna Kozis were killed in the shooting.

Their names will be read aloud at a parkette where Fallon was with a group of friends celebrating a birthday when the shots rang out.

Church bells will ring and the community will hold a moment of silence.

Toronto police Chief Mark Saunders was on Breakfast Television on Monday, and talked about how quickly police responded to the shooting on the Danforth that night, the support for first responders, and the safety of the city.

Saunders said Toronto is safe, adding that tragedies such as these do not define the city.

“When you look at how many citizens stepped up and helped, it really is a true testimony of what this city is and what this city truly represents,” the police chief said.

 

Earlier in the day, Saunders issued a statement, in which he said the shooting was a “tragic attack on our citizens and community that altered many lives forever.”

Mayor John Tory also released a statement, saying that “a year later, the healing continues for the families who lost loved ones, for the injured, and for those who were traumatized by this terrible event.”

Tory was also on Breakfast Television to talk about how Toronto is coping one year after the Danforth shooting.

“It’s been trying because what you want to try to do is get things right, in terms of finding out what happened, because that’s important to make sure that hopefully you can prevent history from repeating itself. But also then, to make sure the healing process takes place,” Tory said.

When asked if Toronto was safe, Tory said “it is incredibly safe, by any measured objective standard. It is one of the safety cities in the world.”

However, the mayor said the city cannot be complacent about its safe standing and realize that there are still problems that need to be fixed.

“We have problems with firearms, we have problems with gang activity, we have problems frankly with disparity between different neighbourhoods in the city, which in some cases can lead to this sort of activity. I think it’s probably the biggest challenge that I face in my job, that the city faces in his job.”

 

A commemorative ceremony was held Sunday at a nearby park where the community gathered for a moment of silence.

Police have said the motive for the attack is not known, but the gunman, Faisal Hussain, had a long history of mental health issues.