Friends, neighbors remember Zaybion Lawrence, 17, as ‘awesome kid’

The teenager was shot dead outside a flat in Scarborough on Wednesday

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Friends and classmates of a 17-year-old boy killed Wednesday outside his Scarborough apartment building left flowers and candles where he fell after being shot multiple times.

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“I spoke to him literally an hour before he died. He was at school in class and I was on the phone with him,” Roshani Zamani, who has known Zaybion Lawrence since 9th grade, said Thursday.

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She was teary-eyed as she left a red balloon heart and a small bouquet of flowers for the friend she knew as ‘Zaib’.

“I keep repeating his voice in my head,” she said of their last conversation just before he was shot outside his apartment building on Gilder Dr., near Eglinton Ave. E., about 3:40 p.m

Zaybion Lawrence.  PHOTO GOFUNDME
Zaybion Lawrence. PHOTO GOFUNDME

“We literally talk to him every day,” said Maya Mackie, who shared a photo of herself with Zaibion.

She was at work when the shooting broke out and only learned of her friend’s death hours later.

“He was a loving man and had a good heart. And that’s something he didn’t deserve at all. He was intelligent and had a passion for music,” Mackie said.

She and Zamani said Zaibion ​​attended high school at the David and Mary Thomson Collegiate Institute.

Zaybion Lawrence, 17, was shot dead outside his apartment building in Scarborough on Wednesday, September 21, 2022.
Zaybion Lawrence, 17, was shot dead outside his apartment building in Scarborough on Wednesday, September 21, 2022. Photo by Supplied

A stream of people gathered in front of the building to say a silent prayer and leave flowers.

One local resident, Richard, said he heard a total of five gunshots.

“We heard a total of three shots. The kid was hiding behind the trash can, came out, three shots. Followed him from behind from about 5 or 10 feet. Shot twice from there. The kid fell,” he recalled.

“He looked from the balcony and his friends were trying to help him. The kid was right there. He was just a kid – 17 years old.”

No suspect information has been released, but witnesses said the shooter fled west on foot.

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Another neighbor, Natalie, said her 13-year-old son played basketball with Zaybion.

“He was a really good kid. He would play basketball with the little kids,” said Natalie, who also left flowers. “He came from a very good family. His mother is an amazing and beautiful soul and this little boy deserves to be remembered and honored for being a good child.

Local residents said a vigil was planned for Thursday evening.

Toronto police homicide detectives are investigating the boy’s murder, the city’s 52nd of the year.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 416-808-7400 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

[email protected]

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It’s been a violent two weeks in the GTA with the targeted killing of police in Toronto. Andrew Hong while on duty and the death of Const. of York Regional Police. Travis Gillespie, killed on his way to work by an alleged impaired driver in a head-on collision.

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Here are some of the other crimes that took place in Toronto at the end of the summer:

SEPT. 5 – Two suspected car thieves with a gun approached a man near Bremner Blvd. and York St. and asked for his keys. The victim ran away. The would-be thieves fled empty-handed in a gray 2019-22 Jeep Grand Cherokee.

SEPT. 5 – A taxi driver was pulled over by a man near Blue Jays Way and Wellington St. W. When the taxi driver got out to put bags in the trunk, police said a man pulled out a knife, got into the driver’s seat and drove off.

SEPT. 10 – A man who was shot went to hospital with serious injuries after a shooting broke out near Kiel. St. and Wilson Ave.

SEPT. 10 – Shaldon Samuda, 15, died after being shot near Keele St. and Sheppard Ave. W. Elian Brown, 18, of Toronto, is wanted for second-degree murder.

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SEPT. 10 – After reports of shots fired near Caledonia Rd. and Eglinton Ave. W., officers found a vehicle with gunshot damage. There are no reports of casualties.

SEPT. 11 – Officers found a man with serious gunshot wounds near Willowdale and Church Aves., southeast of Yonge St. and Finch Ave.

SEPT. 11 – A man was found on University Ave. and Adelaide St., suffering from a gunshot wound to the abdomen.

SEPT. 11 – A woman in her 20s was found with a gunshot wound to the abdomen near Eglinton Ave. and Russell Rd. in Etobicoke.

SEPT. 11 – Police found a gunshot fired at the Rolling Loud music festival at Ontario Place following reports the night before of shots fired near the VIP area of ​​the main stage.

SEPT. 11 – Two men were hospitalized after a shooting broke out inside Club Paradise, a strip club near Bloor St. W. and Lansdowne Ave.

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SEPT. 18 – A woman in her 20s was shot and wounded while sitting in a car near Augusta Avenue and Queen St.

SEPT. 18 – A man suffered stab wounds after a late-night argument with a group outside a bar near Bloor and Christie streets.

SEPT. 20 – A 24-year-old man died and a 25-year-old man was rushed to hospital with life-threatening injuries after being stabbed on a bike lane near Jane St. and Finch Ave. W.
Haroon Imran, 22, of Toronto, is charged with manslaughter and aggravated assault.

SEPT. 20 – Veronica Henry, 67, and Colin Henry, 68, were stabbed to death at an apartment building in Rexdale. Their son, Alpha Henry, 28, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder.

SEPT. 21 – Zebion Lawrence, 17, is shot and killed after school near Gilder Dr. and Eglinton Ave. E. in Scarborough.

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