Michiana man murdered in El Salvador remembered by community - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Michiana man murdered in El Salvador remembered by community

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The weather in Three Oaks, MI Monday afternoon matched the mood of those mourning the death of someone they called a close friend.

Michael James Brown, 53, who friends say lived in Three Oaks his whole life, was murdered in El Salvador over the weekend.

"I thought the world of him," said Michael Fatter, while tearing up. "He was a great guy."  

Brown was shot to death as he was driving through a coffee farm. He was with a woman who is still alive and is now under police protection.

"We lost a great guy," said Fatter, a friend of Brown. "Mike was an awesome man, he was a good man."

According to friends, Brown served in the U.S. Army for over 20 years and had tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Friends say some of his most important work was done right in Three Oaks, where he frequently volunteered.

"He was just a go getter. He'd help anybody out that needed some help and he's been here all his life," said Jack Meyers, another friend of Brown.

Brown is remembered by those who knew him as a fun loving man, who could brighten a room, and someone who always respected others.

"[Brown and I] enjoyed each other when he was home and he was a free spirit," said Fatter. "He was always a happy go lucky guy."

He will never return to his home in Three Oaks and never get to enjoy time with friends at the Three Oaks American Legion where he was a lifetime member. However, friends of Brown say he will always be in Three Oaks because he will be in their hearts and their memories.

"Just such a good person and he's going to be extremely missed," said Meyers.

The U.S. State Department recently warned citizens several weeks ago that there is a major problem with violence in El Salvador right now between rival street gangs.

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