The family of a 30-year-old Kenyan woman found fatally stabbed inside a Scarborough apartment earlier this month has arrived in Canada to take her remains back home.
Lorraine Kerubo Ogoti was pronounced dead on Jan. 11 after being found by police suffering from life-threatening injuries inside an eight-floor apartment building on Birchmount Road, near St. Clair Avenue. Police said she had been stabbed.
“It was very difficult, but we had to come … and pick up the remains of our daughter,” her mother, Anne Ogoti, told CTV News Toronto on Thursday. “Today we go to the funeral home to see the body, maybe choose a casket.”
According to family, Lorraine moved to Canada about a year ago to seek employment opportunities. She has been described as a “go-getter” who made friends easily.
“Lorraine was a very outgoing person. Very humble, very amiable,” her mother said. “She was very hospitable and she was kind. And she loved her son very much. Everything that she would have she would really like to share with him."
Anne Ogoti said that her daughter was planning on returning home to Kenya to visit her four-year-old son, Moses, in the new year. She also said that Lorraine had intended on bringing her son to Canada when she was able.
“She was saying, in the future, when she has settled down, she would very much like her son to join her,” Anne Ogoti said.
Lorraine Ogoti’s parents said they have forgiven the person responsible for their daughter’s death, but are still confused about the circumstances leading up to the murder.
Officers told them that a 40-year-old man, who was found dead on the sidewalk outside the same apartment building where Lorraine Ogoti was found, was their daughter’s boyfriend.
Police said that his cause of death was “blunt force trauma.” Officers are not searching for any other suspects in the incident.
“She never disclosed it to us,” her father, George Ogoti, said. “Maybe it was too soon in the relationship or she wanted to tell us, like a surprise, later on.”
“It’s very hard to imagine that someone can just come and snap life out of your own child. Someone we do not know, someone who just came into our life, maybe a few months ago. Indeed we are very angry,” Anne Ogoti noted.
The Ogoti family flew into Pearson International Airport Thursday morning and was met by Phyl Durdey, the CEO of Flightline Training Services.
After watching CTV News Toronto’s interview with Lorraine’s sister last week, Durdey offered to assist the family in bringing the remains back to Kenya.
“We have a school in Nairobi. It’s been established for about six years now. And when we saw the report on the news, the tragedy that happened, we just had to kick into gear and help the family.”
“We have such a close connection to Kenya I thought it was the right thing to do,” Durdey said. “The thing is, Canada is supposed to be a safe haven and people come here for a better life. It’s something that is so tragic that this can happen in our city.
Air Canada and Airroute Cargo are assisting Durdey in transporting the remains.
The grieving family members said they are grateful for the assistance.
“It’s a foreign country, we have no idea how to get help, but when we find friends and well-wishers helping us, it’s great. We feel encouraged,” Anne Ogoti said. “Not everyone is bad. There are nice people. There are people that can be trusted. There are people who can help.”
The family will attend a funeral service for Lorraine Ogoti in Toronto before taking the body back to Nairobi, where a second service will be held.
The family has set up a GoFundMe campaign to help cover the costs of both funeral services.
With files from CTV News Toronto's Tracy Tong