Victim in random Beach stabbing on long road to recovery, thankful for support

A community is coming together to raise funds for Dylan Cann, 27, who was randomly attacked at the Beaches Jazz Festival and is now recovering from four stab wounds.

'You never think you're going to need the help, but right now I do and I really appreciate it'

Dylan Cann, 27, was stabbed multiple times by a random attacker at the Beaches Jazz Festival, shortly before 11 p.m. on July 25. (Jon Castell/CBC)

When Dylan Cann set out to attend the opening night of the Beaches Jazz Festival on a warm July evening this year, he never imagined he would be stabbed two millimetres from his heart by a stranger.

Cann ​​​suffered four stab wounds during the random attack on July 25th. 

And while he's on the road to recovery, the journey has been a tough one. The 27-year-old has been off of work since the incident, and while he recently had his staples removed, he says he hasn't felt safe since it happened.

"I've installed security cameras and a security system at my house. I definitely don't feel comfortable being out in crowds. It's definitely changed my life a bit," he said.

Cann had been walking with his foster puppy the night of the attack when a young man approached him and started asking about his dog, he told CBC News in July.

When Cann told the man the puppy was eight weeks old, the suspect got agitated, claiming the event was too loud for the dog, before stabbing him.

He managed to stumble away from his attacker and alert firefighters, who administered first aid. A 19-year-old Toronto man is facing several charges — including attempted murder — in connection with the incident.

But a full recovery is still some time away for Cann.

"There's still some internal muscles that aren't fully healed, but hopefully I can start doing some lighter-duty stuff at work," Cann says.

A well-known Beach resident, an online fundraiser was launched immediately after to help Cann get through his time off work. Cann is self employed, running his own businesses which includes physical labour. 

Dylan Cann pictured in hospital after he was stabbed 4 times, in the chest and abdomen. (Submitted/Dylan Cann)

It was through one such job that Jim Richards met Cann, who worked on Richards's roof.

Richards, a talk show host with Newstalk 1010 Toronto, decided to organize a pub crawl in Leslieville to help him along his journey to recovery.

"When I heard what happened to him, I wanted to help him," Richards said. 

"He was just super down to earth and I started hearing he volunteers here and volunteers there. And everybody thought he was a great guy." 

"It doesn't really surprise me that much that people are coming out of the woodwork and offering up great prizes for the raffle and really willing to help and do something."

Cann says he feels lucky to be alive and is grateful for the community's help so far.

"You never think you're going to need the help, but right now I do and I really appreciate it," he said.