James Hollis, 81, who was struck in the head, was in critical condition Saturday afternoon at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, according to police.
Ronald Washington, 69, who was in his motorized wheelchair when he was wounded in the arm and back, was in stable condition.
The shootings occurred near the Sarah Allen Apartments, a Parrish Street housing complex for senior citizens where Washington lives.
A resident of the apartments, who was afraid to give his name, said he had just finished his nightly prayers when he heard the "wow, wow, wow" of an automatic weapon.
"I just got off my knees," he said. "I rolled off the bed and onto the floor."
The man, who said he did not know Washington, said he heard gunfire every couple of weeks there. Even living on the top floor of his building, he does not feel safe, he said.
"You pray and hope that you make it through," he said. The shooters "don't respect nothing or nobody."
Hollis had just walked a friend to the bus stop on Lancaster Avenue several blocks away and was headed home to Ogden Street when he was wounded, a neighbor said.
A cane and a bloodstain were visible Friday night where Hollis was shot. But by Saturday, the only sign of what happened was a small piece of yellow police tape tied to a stop sign.
Theresa King, 59, was at a family party Friday when she learned of the shooting. She has known Hollis since she was 17, said King, who called him a fixture on the close-knit block.
"He is a beautiful person," she said. King said she had talked with Hollis' family and planned to visit him Sunday.
Hollis is known in the neighborhood as "Mr. Shoebie," said King, who wasn't sure where the nickname came from. Originally from the South, Hollis and his wife, Rose, raised their two children on the block, she said. He worked in construction all his life. His wife died about a year ago, she recalled.
Neighbors on the block look out for one another, according to King. Young men will stop and give Hollis a ride or help with his packages, she said.
King said she was disturbed by news that the homicide rate in Philadelphia had increased in 2011.
"This isn't Iraq. You shouldn't have to walk down the street and duck," King said. "We don't live in a war zone. We live in the United States of America."
Contact staff writer Mari A. Schaefer at 610-892-9149, email@example.com, or @MariSchaefer on Twitter.
Staff writer Jeremy Roebuck contributed to this article.