It was a humid summer's night in Sydney's north-west on Saturday when seven children, all from the same extended family, took a walk to get some ice cream.
As the sun was coming down Danny Abdallah, the father of three siblings who were tragically killed that night, was assured by his kids they would be home before dark.
Since they were in a big group, he decided it was fine for them to go but told them very clearly to stick together and stay on the footpath, reports news.com.au.
"I told them to go for a walk, a little walk and stay together. 'You guys should be OK', give them a little independence and this is a one-in-a-million chance thing," he told reporters.
Not long after he gave them that advice, the group of seven wandered past a golf club at Oatlands on Bettington when the unthinkable happened.
Allegedly drunk driver Samuel William Davidson, 29, was returning from grabbing some cash from a servo when his ute mounted the kerb and hit the group of children.
This morning, Abdallah, a father of six, has received the good news that his 11-year-old boy had come out of a coma.
However, three of his children, Anthony, 13, Angelina, 12, and Sienna Abdallah, 9, were killed that night.
The fourth victim has been named as 11-year-old Veronique Sakr — a cousin of the other victims.
Overnight, Veronique's family released a statement paying tribute to their "beautiful girl".
"We are devastated by the tragic and senseless loss of our beautiful girl, Veronique," her family wrote.
"Words cannot describe the pain we feel for all the families impacted by this tragedy.
"Veronique was a vibrant 11-year-old girl, full of life, love and had a maturity well beyond her young years.
"Veronique brought us all such joy and will be forever remembered. Veronique will remain in our hearts always."
The 11-year-old was in year 6 at Santa Sabina College. On Facebook, the school announced it would be holding a memorial service in her honour.
Abdallah pleaded with drivers to be more careful.
"Yesterday, I lost three of my children," the tearful father of six said.
"I had a cousin, Bridget, she lost her daughter as well. I don't know what to say. I'm numb, probably that's how I feel at the moment.
"All I just want to say is please, drivers, be careful. These kids were just walking innocently, enjoying each others' company, and this morning I woke up – I have lost three kids.
"Please, just, make sure you love your loved ones, your kids especially."
Abdallah's wife, Leila, was pictured at the scene on Sunday morning, tearfully paying tribute to her children.
Distraught members of the Oatlands community on Sunday also placed flowers at the scene, with shrines established for each of the Abdallah children.
The man accused of manslaughter and more than a dozen serious driving offences, meanwhile, will remain behind bars for at least another two months after failing to apply for bail.
Samuel William Davidson, 29, was allegedly three times the legal blood alcohol limit on Saturday night when his Mitsubishi ute mounted a kerb in Oatlands and struck seven children on the footpath.
Of the surviving children, a nine-year-old boy is in a serious but stable condition in hospital, and two girls aged 13 and 10 suffered minor injuries.
Davidson was arrested after returning a positive roadside breath test result and allegedly recorded a blood alcohol reading of 0.15.
He has been charged with 20 offences including four counts of manslaughter, dangerous driving occasioning death and grievous bodily harm, negligent driving and drink-driving.
His case was on Sunday heard at Parramatta Bail Court. He did not appear in court and did not apply for bail, which was formally refused by Magistrate John McIntosh.
Davidson is scheduled to return to Parramatta Local Court on April 2.