By Denise Paglinawan
Friends and family members of Roy Zamora are looking for answers after the 26-year-old Ryerson marketing student died in a daytime shooting in North York last week.
Toronto police and paramedics responded to a call about gunshots near Camborne Avenue and Dalraith Road near Keele Street around 2 p.m. on Oct. 11.
When they arrived to the scene, Zamora was unconscious in his car in his Downsview neighbourhood driveway. He was then pronounced dead on the scene.
“[He] never deserved to go in such a senseless manner,” his cousin Danier Loayza wrote in a statement to The Eye.
Loayza said her family is distraught after losing Zamora, who they described as “a man full of drive and dreams.” He was a hardworking man who, while attending university, was working in his family’s financial services business, she said.
“We want #justiceforroyzamora so we can all have a little bit of peace,” Loayza wrote.
Zamora celebrated his 26th birthday a week before he was shot. For his mother, Lourdes Loja-Zamora, Zamora was her “life and reason.” She called him an “extraordinary son.”
“I appreciate the 26 years [he] made me happy. [Roy was] my backbone and my biggest support,” she said in her statement to The Eye.
Police are searching for two suspects last seen leaving the neighbourhood in a grey car the day of the shooting. Both suspects are described as men between the ages of 18 to 25, around six-foot tall and wearing all black.
Zamora’s death is the 85th homicide reported in Toronto this year. Of the 85, 28 victims were 25 or younger. Last May, an 18-year-old man was shot and killed at Yonge-Dundas Square, steps from Ryerson University’s campus.
“Roy was such a loving person with a huge heart, always putting others before him. Roy’s soul was so pure, even on his worst days he never failed to be a great man. Always supporting and pushing those around him to do better,” Zamora’s best friend Yesenia Damiron said in a statement to The Eye.
Maria Augimeri, Toronto city councilor for the Downsview ward, spoke to the victim’s family shortly after the shooting. She told reporters Zamora was “a very good student” at Ryerson.
University President Mohamed Lachemi said his death is, “a very, very sad thing for us as a community.”
Daphne Taras, the dean of the Ted Rogers School of Management (TRSM), said she was “deeply saddened” to share the news about Zamora’s death in a mass email to business students. “We mourn the loss of one of the members of our TRSM family, and our hearts go out to the family and friends of Roy.”
Taras provided information on university resources for students seeking grief supports, noting the school’s commitment to helping students in this difficult period.
“I remember going to your house on McRoberts in elementary to play video games and eat salchipapas when we had no worries in the world,” Oli Arguelles, a friend of Zamora’s wrote in an Instagram caption alongside a photo of his friend.
“He was a great guy, always looking out for his friends, family and others,” Arguelles told The Eye. “I’m devastated about what happened.”
Loayza said he will be remembered by his loved ones as “an incredible human being with a huge heart and smile that will never be forgotten.”
Investigators are asking anyone with information about his death to contact police at 416-808-7400 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477).