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‘A normal day’ returns as Scarborough neighbourhood recovers from tragedy

Police officers knocked on all the doors of a townhouse complex at the corner of Morningside Avenue and Danzig Street on Tuesday.

Galit Rodan/The Globe and Mail

With much of the police tape pulled down following the Danzig Street shooting, family members of victims and area residents tried to return to their normal lives Wednesday.

Most of the television crews had left, few police officers remained at the crime scene, and kids were let out on the streets to play. Across town, Robert Athanas waited for a visit from his 19-year-old daughter Amira Joseph-Athanas, who was struck by bullets during the fatal shootout.

Mr. Athanas said he was at work in the early hours of Tuesday when he got a call telling him his daughter had been hit shot by crossfire.

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"Her mom called and all I heard was basically 'gunshots,'" Mr. Athanas said. "You hear [that] and it doesn't sink in, you think 'Okay, maybe it was just a graze.' But then you start thinking if it's a gunshot it could be that someone's killed, paralyzed or really badly wounded."

He found out Ms. Joseph-Athanas had gunshot wounds to her lower back and arm.

"She felt the first one and she got up again," he said. "When she attempted to run again she felt another one hit her."

Mr. Athanas said his daughter was released from Sunnybrook hospital Tuesday afternoon. She was able to walk and the wounds were only causing her slight pain.

He said he had not yet heard a full description of the night's events, but said his daughter, who is preparing to go to college, was at the party to visit friends from high school. He said the week's events do not make him concerned about his children visiting the area.

"I've never had that fear," said Mr. Athanas, who now lives near Morningside Avenue and Sewells Road. "Everybody looks out for everybody."

As the day drew to an end on Danzig Street, neighbours spoke to one another as kids rode by on bicycles. A group of teens played basketball on a shady patch of concrete next to the road. Nearby, a group of children played hide and seek while their mothers watched.

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An ice cream truck slowly rolled down the street just before dinner time, playing a jingle. Kids ran up with bills in their hands and bought dipped cones and frozen treats.

"This is a normal day," remarked Shelley Dupuis, a single mother of three. "This is what this neighbourhood is like."

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