Loading articles...

EXCLUSIVE: Family mourns murdered community leader

Nahom Berhane was killed outside a pool hall on Danforth Avenue in Toronto on Sept. 28, 2014. CITYNEWS

A fatal stabbing has left a family distraught over the loss of a man who, by many accounts, took care of not just his family, but also the entire community.

Nahom Berhane was identified by loved ones as the man stabbed to death early Saturday morning outside a pool hall near Danforth and Greenwood avenues.

“Everybody’s here because he’s touched every single life — stranger or family or friend — it doesn’t even matter … newcomers,” Nahom’s sister Arsema Berhane said. “He died on the street where he served … He died on the street where he served.”

The 34-year-old was father to a 13-year-old daughter, helped raised another little girl and acted as a mentor to many more.

“He was my daughter’s father,” Mizan Eman said. “He treated her just like his own. He raised her … He’s raised many.”

Berhane was well known in Toronto’s Eritrean community, volunteering as an organizer with CITY Leaders, a youth group connected with the United Way and with whom he was meeting with just hours before the fatal stabbing.

“He was there, leading the conversation, only to find out this senseless act was waiting for him on his way home,” Arsema Berhane said.

The circumstances surrounding the stabbing are still vague and no suspect description has been released.

On Sunday, police were canvassing the area where the victim was stabbed and found without vital signs, just up the street from a bar where he was known to DJ on a regular basis.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact police or Crime Stoppers.