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Families, friends and witnesses recalled memories of the Toronto van attack

Family members, friends of the victims killed in a van attack that happened a year ago at Yonge Street and also some witnesses recalled memories that happened that day.

Tragedy on the road

According to Rocco D’ Amico, father of one of the victims, said the loss of his daughter is still raw in their memories. He remembers the smile of his daughter, her giving spirit and her positive attitude in life. Those memories motivated our family to move on. Her brother just thinks of all the things she did and having a positive mindset when she was alive.

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She began providing four victims with basic first aid and CPR while waiting for the paramedics to arrive.

That feeling is also recalled by other witnesses and care providers who provided first aid and CPR to the victims. A woman named Tiffany Jefkins; a resident of North York was at the Mel Lastman Square when the incident happened. According to her, thinking back to the incident, it resulted to a lot of fragmented memories or a memory disorder where the person is not capable in associating the context of his/her memories that happened in recent events. Jefkins is a registered CPR trainer. She jumped into action on the day of the incident. They were having a picnic together with her one-year old daughter and a friend when they saw a van hopped the curb and flowed into the people who are on the street. She placed her daughter in a safe place and immediately run into the chaos. She began providing four victims with basic first aid and CPR while waiting for the paramedics to arrive. She felt strong, but terrified at the same time. She felt that she has to do something. Although Jefkins feels safe in their neighborhood, but memories of the trauma returns when she hears sounds of truck bumping each other or a car hitting a pothole.

A pastor at Faith Church named Sean Huh, has similar experience. Sean Huh recalled that day was a sunny day and many people are out in the street. Minutes later, there was just chaos. He hosted a vigil for the community after the attack. He spends time talking to neighbors and shopkeepers making sure they felt supported. Huh does not exactly know what to do, and so many people still wants to talk. Huh is now part of the group called We Love Willowdale. It is a community group that organizes memorial services which is supported by the city.

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