David Stokoe remembered for his loyalty and care for others during candlelight vigil


SANDY, Utah (ABC4 News) – David Stokoe ran his last race Thursday night.

It was the night he was murdered in Salt Lake City.

Police said Stokie, a realtor, was attempting to evict three people when an argument broke out and he was shot multiple times.

Monday night at a candlelight vigil honoring Stokoe, hundreds turned out to pay their respects and honor him.

“He will be known as a hero and a generous person,” said Britt Sharp, the president of Ranlife real estate.  “He was a loyal person (who) built great friendships.  I just want to say, I love Dave and I am always going to cherish the impact he’s had in my life.  And I will continue to cherish that.

A co-worker Liann May also spoke before those holding candles. She reminded those attending that this was a moment to reflect on one’s life.

“Are we like Dave?” she asked. “That’s what is so heartbreaking.  We can do hard things (like him).  Don’t give up.  Go to the finish line.  He finished his last race last week.”

His father and mother were also in attendance. Tom Stokoe said he was overwhelmed by the turnout of the community for his son.

“It is so meaningful that so many would come out at this vigil on behalf of my son, David Stokoe and honor him and pay tribute to him and talk about the person he is,” said his father.

He said his son has been in the real estate business nearly all of his adult life.   Stokoe leaves behind a wife and four children.

“He was a kind thoughtful person, a loving person, dedicated to his wife and his family,” said his father Tom Stokoe.  “And that he had goodness and respect for all people.”

Three people were arrested for his murder. Police said 31-year-old Manuel Velasquez shot him.  His roommate Jessica Reese and a friend Diana Hernandez allegedly helped Velasquez hide the body and fled before getting caught.

“It’s been a rough couple of days,” said May. “I think we are all in disbelief of this horrible tragedy but I know Dave wouldn’t want us to waste our energy and reflect on his death, but rather of his life.”

A Gofundme account has been setup for Stokoe’s family.

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