20 year old dies after fight at party

Andrea Medeiros


A man is killed after a fight at a welcome home party in Glocester. The 20 year old's father said he was punched in the head.

Family and friends were having a party for a returning soldier coming back from Afghanistan, Saturday. But by the time eight thirty rolled around, police got a call about a fight and found a 20 year old man they couldn't wake up.

Flags waved in the breeze in the peaceful Glocester neighborhood, Monday. It's hard to believe there was a fight there over the weekend that killed a 20 year old Ronald Kopka Jr. 

“He didn't deserve what happened to him,” said dad Ronald Kopka, “Someone did hit him and caused his death and more than one person was involved.”

Ronald Kopka Jr.'s dad was tearing up as he tried to figure out what happened to his fun loving son.

“He loved bow and arrows, motorcycles, and uh you know,” said Kopka.

He also loved his friends. He was at one of their houses Saturday night welcoming a soldier home when police got the call about an assault.

“It tuned into a tragic event and we're trying to determine what led up to this tragedy,” said Glocester Police Chief Joseph DelPrete, “Was it medical issues or was it other circumstances at the party?”

Officers wouldn't say whether or not underage drinking was going on at the party, but somehow Kopka ended up with life-threatening injuries. and was airlifted to the hospital.

His dad is not angry at the Graff family, who hosted the welcome home party, but devastated he'll never see his son again.

“Just a great kid all around, like all of the rest of the kids around this town,” said Kopka, “And I'm sure it was an accident, but we'll find out.”

Police and the Attorney General's office are looking into the fight. No charges have been filed.