The families of two teen boys who were gunned down outside a north Toronto housing complex last week held a community vigil on Wednesday night, pleading with anyone with information about the shooting to contact police.
Kwame Duodu, 15, and his friend O'She Doyles-Whyte were shot outside Duodo's home in the Yorkwoods Village Housing Complex on Grandravine Drive, near Jane Street and Sheppard Avenue, shortly after 1:30 p.m. ET last Friday.
An emotional Samuel Addo, the uncle of Duodu, said the family had received overwhelming support from the community but pleaded for people to come forward with information.
'We don't have to be scared of these people because if we come together as one in the community these people will run away, they won't be able to stay when we are one.'—Samuel Addo, Kwame Duodo's uncle
"We just can't make sense of this. There is somebody who really knows something," he said. "Please, these boys don't deserve this. These boys really really don't deserve what happened to them."
Duodu and Doyles-Whyte's deaths are the latest in an upswing of gun violence in the area that recently claimed the life of 15-year-old Tahj Loor Walters who was shot at a Jane and Finch shopping plaza last month.
"We don't have to be scared of these people because if we come together as one in the community these people will run away, they won't be able to stay when we are one," Addo said.
Doyles-Whyte's mother Stephanie Whyte spoke publicly for the first time since her eldest son's death and described the family's deep state of grief, including the teen's two brothers who "idolized" him.
"All the good times we had; Him being a loving caring brother, friend and most of all my son," she said. "O'She loved his family, O'She loved his friends but most of all O'She loved his grandmother — she was his world."
'Very quiet guy'
Addo too described the shock of hearing that his nephew and friend were shot in broad daylight.
"Never in my mind would I ever (have) thought my nephew Kwame would get into trouble," said Addo, describing him as a "very quiet guy" who was also the first to answer the phone at home because he rarely left the house.
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"He never goes out walking about in the neighbourhood so for this to happen to him is a big big blow," he said. "If he knew what was coming to him he could have had the chance to do something — he had no idea."
Duodu was active in the community first as a volunteer at the local Boys and Girls Club, later securing a job as a camp counselor. He had finished work for the summer only three days before he died.
Toronto police have said they are looking for three "young" suspects seen leaving the scene shortly after the shooting.
"I definitely know that there are some people out there who know who these people are," said Addo. "Please don't sit down, do something, because you never know it could happen to you."