University of Louisville graduate found dead in Philadelphia - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

University of Louisville graduate found dead in Philadelphia

Posted: Updated:
Dino Dizdarevic Dino Dizdarevic
Vance Peers Vance Peers
Professor Jim Watters Professor Jim Watters
. -

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A Bosnian refugee who made Kentucky his home was found murdered in Pennsylvania. The young man was supposed to come to Louisville for Derby festivities, but never showed up.

Dino Dizdarevic, 25, received his chemical engineering degree from the University of Louisville in 2013. Friends who knew him on campus are devastated over his death.

His friends said Dizdarevic never met a stranger and managed to impact just about everyone he met.

"He was smart, he was funny, he made you laugh," said Vance Peers.

Dizdarevic had just moved from Louisville to Philadelphia and accepted a job in nearby New Jersey. Looking back at his life, his family fled to Kentucky in the early 90s. Dizdarevic managed to escape the chaos in his war-ravaged homeland of Bosnia, only to die a violent death in alley in a country where he thought he was safe.  

"Just wrong place, wrong time," said Peers.

His body was found May 1. Police said he was beaten and strangled. It was in an area called Chester, near Philadelphia, known for being dangerous. His friends don't know what took him there.

"If it was a random act, detectives are saying we may never know," said Peers.

Peers said Dizdarevic was supposed to come back to Louisville for Derby weekend and they were planning to go to a few parties together, but when Dizdarevic's sister went to Cincinnati to pick him up at the airport he didn't show up.

"I called my mom freaking out," said Una Dizdarevic. "I stayed at the Cincy airport that entire day talking to every airline in case he might have changed his flight, he was late or something."

News of Dizdarevic's tragic death has traveled quickly. Professor Jim Watters at UofL remembers Dizdarevic's smile and dedication.

"How could something like this happen to such a decent fellow, such a nice young man?" questioned Watters. "Somebody who has his whole life in front of him."

Police in Philadelphia have not made any arrests in the case.

Dizdarevic's friends have established a special fund to help with his funeral and related expenses.

If you would like to help, refer to the Dino Dizdarevic Memorial Fund at any PNC Bank located in the U.S. 

Copyright 2014 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.