By Rick Sallinger


DENVER (CBS4) – A man living in Denver was killed in the Easter bombings in Sri Lanka. Dieter Kowalski was in Colombo Sunday when at least nine bombs tore through churches and hotels in three Sri Lankan cities.

Dieter Kowalski (credit: Facebook)

Kowalski worked for an education company called Pearson. His office was based in Centennial where he worked as a technical services team leader.

John Fallon, Pearson’s CEO, sent a memo to the staff saying Kowalski had just arrived to his hotel when he was killed in an explosion.

“We’re angry that a good man, who took simple pleasure in fixing things, has been killed, along with many others, by evil men and women who know only how to destroy,” wrote Fallon.

Sri Lankan security personnel inspect the debris of a car after it explodes when police tried to defuse a bomb near St. Anthony’s Shrine as priests look on in Colombo on April 22, 2019, a day after the series of bomb blasts targeting churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka. – The death toll from bomb blasts that ripped through churches and luxury hotels in Sri Lanka rose dramatically April 22 to 290 — including dozens of foreigners — as police announced new arrests over the country’s worst attacks for more than a decade. (Photo by Jewel SAMAD / AFP) (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)

Kowalski was a leader with the operational technical services team and was traveling to Sri Lanka for work. On his Facebook page, he posted before he left, “Let the fun begin.”

Kowalski was from Wisconsin, where his father spoke of losing a son.

“It was a shock. I can’t understand why they killed him,” Marvin Kowalski told the CBS affiliate WDJT in Milwaukee.

Dieter Kowalski (credit: Facebook)

His neighbor and friend Zachary Cheek is stunned at Kowalski’s death.

“The good ones get taken so early. He was the nicest dude I could ever imagine,” he
told CBS4’s Rick Sallinger.

Cheek said Kowalski owned the building where he lived, also serving as his landlord. He said he was generous and often help him out on paying the rent.

Dieter Kowalski (credit: Facebook)

Cheek said Kowalski loved to travel for work and pleasure, “Every time I turned around he was going on another trip out of country, state.”

Now Kowalski’s cat Matilda wanders at his Denver home, oblivious that her owner will not be back. Cheek said he will make sure the cat is cared for properly.

He added the killers should realize what they have done, “The people who did this should have some kind of conscience about what happened.”

Another Denver area friend, Ashleigh Fitterer, told CBS4, “He was a beautiful amazing human being with the biggest heart.”

According to the State Department, at least four Americans, including Kowalski, were killed and several others seriously injured in the attacks.

Rick Sallinger

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