PARKER - More than 150 people gathered under candlelight Sunday evening to say goodbye to fallen Marine Cpl. David Sonka.
Sonka, 23, was killed earlier this month by an Afghan Army soldier he was training. The soldier turned on Sonka and shot him. The soldier also killed Sonka's K9 companion, Flex.
"You go through all this time thinking that once you graduate you'll be able to meet back up with him but sometimes you don't get that chance," said Roman Padilla, a former classmate.
Chance is something Roman Padilla learned through his friend Dave. Between the backyard Barbeques and dating girls on the soccer team together, the two had become close.
"He was quiet, but he was fun to be around if you got to know him a bit. Once you got him to open up a bit, he was fun to be around," Padilla said.
Sonka had a serious side of course. And nothing was more serious to him than his plans after High School.
"He had talked about it ever since I had met him. He knew he was going to go in to the marines. He just wanted to fight for his country. It was something he believed in," Padilla said.
Sonka was dedicated to his country, as much as he was to his High School sweetheart. The two got married right after graduation.
There was someone else Dave became close with... his K9 partner Flex. The two had spent a lot of time together in Afghanistan and bonded as close as any man and pup can. Which made it all the more difficult, when Flex was killed too.
A K9 group was also on hand at the event.
Prayers for Sonka and Flex were both read, followed by a speech presented by Sonka's wife.
Mostly everyone in attendance wore Broncos colors. The Broncos were Sonka's favorite team.
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