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NEW ORLEANS — A Marine who had survived duty in Iraq was stabbed to death in the French Quarter while two other men were shot — one fatally — in violence that ended the Halloween weekend.
Police say a man was killed about 6:30 a.m. Monday and another was shot in the head hours earlier by gunshots in apparently unrelated incidents.
On Sunday, police said 23-year-old Ryan Lekosky of Metairie and his wife were walking about 3:30 a.m. about a block from Bourbon Street when a man drove up and began yelling comments about Lekosky's wife. Police said she argued with the driver, and Lekosky was stabbed when he tried to intervene.
Lekosky, a Marine sergeant who worked in aviation supply, was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, and had served in Iraq, said Capt. Kate VandenBossche, spokeswoman for Marine Reserve Forces in New Orleans. She said he was living in Metairie while stationed in New Orleans, but listed his home as in Nueces County, Texas.
Family members told the Corpus Christi Caller Times that Lekosky was in his Marine dress uniform, walking his new wife home from a Marine Ball. She was not identified.
Lekosky's parents headed to Louisiana to meet her for the first time and decide whether to bring his body home for burial in Corpus Christi.
His older brother, Billy Lekosky, said the family was shocked to hear the Iraq and Afghanistan veteran was killed on American soil after years in combat zones.
"It's seems like he was safer over there then he was in his own country," Billy Lekosky told the newspaper.
He said that after several men began yelling obscene remarks at his wife from a passing car, Ryan Lekosky confronted one, who pulled out a knife and stabbed him several times.
The Quarter was packed over the weekend with Halloween revelers and New Orleans Saints fans who poured out of the Superdome after the team's Sunday night win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Sukhdeo Doobay, 68, was walking Monday near the site of the fatal shooting. "It gives you an eerie feeling," he said.
Doobay said he has lived in the Quarter since the early 1990s, and seen crime rates there rise and fall. The last few months had been calmer, he said.
Doobay said he didn't know whether to attribute the weekend violence to increasing crime or to the fact that Sunday had brought out crowds for Halloween and the New Orleans Saints' night game.
Amanda Thomas, 24, works at a daiquiri bar on Bourbon Street near the site where a 20-year-old man was shot in the head. There have been several late-night and early morning shootings during the year she's worked there, the Connecticut transplant said.