Slain restaurant employee's friends remember life taken too soon - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Slain restaurant employee's friends remember life taken too soon

David Rowser David Rowser

The sudden and tragic death of David Rowser, 26, has his friends remembering a life taken too soon.

Rowser was shot and killed after interrupting a robbery at the One Guy from Italy Restaurant on 50th Street.

Sesilo Lopez, 28, and Brian Suniga, 32, have been charged with murder. They are in the Lubbock County Detention Center on a $1,000,000 bond.

Friends of David Rowser say he was known as Davey or David. He was just about to turn 27 on February 5th. Friends say they are devastated to see his life end like this, a life that touched so many.

Greg Patterson saw his friend and former fraternity brother Dave Rowser two weeks ago.

"He was talking about going to culinary school in San Antonio or New York. He was very enthusiastic about it," Patterson said.

"For me that was the worst part," Patterson said. He knew Rowser through the Alpha Tao Omega Fraternity at Texas Tech. Rowser's obituary says he moved to Lubbock in 2003 for college.

"One thing that we say in Alpha Tao Omega is that we love and respect all of our brothers. It's truly nice to know that even though we may not have seen Dave for a couple of years now that we have the love and respect for him as we always had. A lot of the men are grieving," Patterson said.

Before college, Rowser lived overseas in Moldova, Tokyo and Kobe. He graduated in from Christian Academy in Japan. There he was a choir member and worked in a Japanese coffee house.

When he got back to the states Rowser took up dancing. He even taught private lessons.

He spent the last few years working at the One Guy From Italy restaurant. Patterson says that was one place he could fulfill his passion for food.

"We will always miss Dave. He was a very likeable guy. He was often the life of the party wherever we were," Patterson said.

Friends say Rowser was there whenever anyone needed him. Austin Pennington was also a fraternity brother of Rowser's.  He says he last saw him when the pair ran into one another at the restaurant where Rowser worked.

"At the time, it was just a 'how are ya doing,' catching up, small talk conversation. He had some plans for the future, educational things. He was trying to save up some money, working at One Guy's and he had that job for a long time," Pennington said.

Pennington says Rowser's personality and charisma were infectious.

"So excited and enthusiastic about everything. Whether it was school, future plans, life in general or his relationships with his brothers and other friends. His enthusiasm was felt by everybody and that's what made him such a charismatic person," Pennington said.

Pennington says, in recent months, he and Rowser saw less of each other.

"But, all the memories we had from the times we were in constant contact with him were great. He was such a nice guy and for his death to occur so violently and tragically, it was really tough for a lot of us," Pennington said.

Pennington says it's tough to cope with the loss of Rowser, but his death serves as a reminder of how precious life can be.

"Now, I think we all wish we could go back and cherish those memories more and re-ignite some of those relationships we had with Dave and those memories," Pennington said.

Rowser is survived by his brothers and parents.

Rowser's fraternity brothers will attend the visitation and funeral. The visitation will be Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Lake Ridge Chapel and Memorial Designers, 6025 82nd Street. Funeral services will follow 2 p.m. Friday at the same location. Graveside services will be held in O'Donnell, according to David Rowser's Facebook page.

A memorial fund has been set up in David Rowser's name at City Bank and American State Bank.

Copyright 2011 KCBD NewsChannel 11

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