Many tears were shed Wednesday afternoon as family members, friends and co-workers came together to remember Kansas City Police Department CSI Michael Chou.
"His colleagues and friends all had one comment: Michael always had a smile. That's what they remember," his heartbroken father Andrew Chou said Wednesday afternoon.
A man who had downed shots of whiskey while celebrating his birthday plowed his vehicle into Michael Chou's early Sunday, as he was leaving the Kansas City Crime Lab where he worked, according to prosecutors.
Larneal Davis, 28, of Independence has been charged with involuntary manslaughter. His vehicle hit Michael Chou's so hard that his vehicle split in two and burst into flames, police say.
The 29-year-old Michael Chou loved his job and his co-workers, his family said. Family members said Michael Chou inherited the "police gene" from his grandfather, who was a police officer.
"He just liked that he had a job that challenged him every day," Katherine Chou said about her brother. "He loved it. It was absolutely what he wanted to do."
She said that too many people don't consider the damage and pain that comes from their bad decisions.
"It's not worth it," she said. "We can never get Michael back, so think twice before you make that decision."
A funeral service will be held on Saturday in Michael Chou's native Naperville, IL, where he will be laid to rest.
His family now is left with their precious memories.
"We are very proud of him," Andrew Chou said as he wept. "He is our pride."
In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to be made in Michael Chou's honor to the Kansas City Crime Laboratory, care of the Police Foundation of Kansas City. Donations should be sent to the attention of Betsey Solberg, 1125 Locust St., Kansas City, MO, 64106-2623.
In addition to his father and sister, he is survived by his mother, Michelle Chou, who was obviously grief stricken during Wednesday's service.
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