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David P. Velarde, Navy electronics technician May 21, 1980 -- Dec. 9, 2005

David P. Velarde, a U.S. Navy electronics technician who completed two overseas tours in the Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf, died Dec. 9 in a motor vehicle accident in Jacksonville, Fla. He was 25.

Mr. Velarde, who was stationed aboard the USS Franklin D. Roosevelt at the time of his death, was scheduled to be discharged from the Navy in April, after six years of duty.

A Buffalo native, he graduated from Hutchinson-Central Technical High School in 1998. After attending the University at Buffalo for one year, he enlisted in the Navy.

Family members said he enjoyed attending Buffalo Sabres and Bills games while visiting his family when he was on leave.

Surviving are a son, Payton R. of Jacksonville; his parents, David J. and Dawn E. of Buffalo; a brother, Jeffrey of Buffalo; a sister, Sarah of Buffalo; a dear friend, Vicki Lira of Jacksonville; and grandparents, Dolores Velarde of Buffalo, John Woodley of Grand Island and Peggy Woodley of Altoona, Pa.

A prayer service will be held at 8:45 a.m. Wednesday in the Donald J. Siwek Funeral Home, 3000 Delaware Ave., Kenmore, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 9:30 in St. Florian Church, 567 Hertel Ave. Burial, with full military honors, will be in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Town of Tonawanda.

[G/WARNER]

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