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Fundraiser started for Toronto man allegedly killed by 8 teens in gruesome swarming

A fundraiser has now been started for the man who died after an alleged "swarming" event involving eight teen girls near Toronto's Union Station last month.

On Tuesday, Toronto Police confirmed the identity of the man, who was experiencing homelessness at the time of the attack, as 59-year-old Toronto resident Ken Lee.

This horrific event took place on Dec. 18, when officers were called to the area of York Street and University Avenue for a report of an assault.

Lee was transported from the scene by paramedics to a nearby hospital with life-threatening injuries, where he was pronounced dead shortly after the incident.

Now, the grieving friends and family of the victim are appealing to the community to help raise funds for a funeral and any potential legal costs through a GoFundMe campaign.

Started by Helen Shum, a family member of Lee, the page for the GoFundMe campaign alleges that the 59-year-old was attacked after "protecting his friend."

"This has destroyed our family and has completely devastated his elderly mother's heart. A mother should never have to bury her child. Ken Lee was a beloved son, brother, and uncle. He was only 59 years old at the time and his birthday was last week," reads the campaign.

Lee is remembered as a "kind soul" who always helped anybody in need, even if he didn't know them.

The campaign indicates that Lee was "experiencing some bad luck" and was determined to "get his life back on track."

Shum says friends and family were waiting for him to return home once he felt it was best.

"We ensured that he knew we were always here for him and were waiting for him to return home. He wanted to resolve his issues independently, and we understood and respected his wishes," she said.

Lee's family is now planning his funeral, with details on the service to be announced shortly.

"Ken died a hero, and we are asking the community for support to help us give Ken the funeral that he deserves and any possible legal fees that may arise."

Launching just 24 hours ago, the GoFundMe has raised almost $6,000 as of 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday. It has a total goal of $50k.

The case has sent shock-waves through the city as the alleged suspects are eight teenagers, ranging from 13 to 15 years old. They have all been charged with second-degree murder.

Toronto Police indicated they believe the girls met through "social media" and that they hail from different parts of the city.

Investigators also revealed that the girls are believed to be involved in an earlier incident on that same evening, almost an hour-and-a-half before the alleged attack. Details about this event have not been released publicly. 

Lee was Toronto's 68th homicide victim of 2022.

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