TARPON SPRINGS — The community continues to honor the life and service of slain Tarpon Springs Police Officer Charles Kondek in a multitude of forms.
This Saturday’s Tarpon Springs Little League Spring 2015 Opening Day Ceremony will be held in honor of Kondek and the subsequent season will be dedicated to him.
Kondek, 45, was gunned down on the morning of Dec. 21 after responding to a noise complaint, leaving behind a wife and six children.
Authorities say Marco Antonio Parilla, 23, who was wanted for a parole violation, shot Kondek and then ran over the fallen officer with a stolen car while fleeing the scene. In January a grand jury indicted Parilla on a charge of first-degree, and the Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney’s Office has said it plans to seek the death penalty.
“I know our Tarpon Springs families were all impacted by the loss of Officer Kondek as were all of us at the League and we are proud to be able to honor him in this way,” wrote Tarpon Springs Little League President John Farrar in a press release.
A dedication plaque is to be presented to the Kondek family along with a special gift at Saturday’s ceremony. The event is scheduled for 9 a.m. to noon at Sisler Field, 711 Meres Blvd. An additional plaque will be given to a representative from the Tarpon Springs Police Department.
A Kondek family member will then throw out the ceremonial first pitch to officially kick off the new season.
All Tarpon Springs Little League players will wear an Officer Kondek memorial police badge patch on their uniforms opposite the sleeve with the official Little League patch.
Police Chief Robert Kochen, other police officers, Tarpon Springs Fire Department representatives, Mayor David Archie, city commissioners and Tampa Bay Rays mascot Raymond are expected to attend. Raymond is scheduled to appear 11–11:40 a.m.
According to the press release, a crowd of 700 to 800 people is anticipated.
For more information about Saturday’s event, call (727) 810-0792.