American beaten to death in Greece has Tampa ties

An American tourist died early Friday after being beaten to death in a bar in Greece.

Bakari Henderson, 22, from Austin, Texas, was visiting the island of Zakynthos, Greece, when a bar fight escalated into a brawl, leaving the University of Arizona graduate dead.

Police arrested two men Friday night, both considered the main suspects in the investigation, NBC News reported. Seven others were also arrested.

Henderson's family said he visited the island for a photo shoot while preparing to launch a new fashion line, according to a statement given to WTSP by a cousin, who lives in Tampa.

“Bakari loved spending time with family and friends, traveling and meeting new people,” the statement said. “He was a big thinker and enjoyed coming up with new business ventures.”

The State Department said it was communicating with local authorities on the matter and providing assistance to Henderson’s family.

“We offer our sincerest condolences to family and friends, and out of respect for the family during this difficult time, we have no further comment,” the agency said in a statement.

Henderson held a degree in business finance and entrepreneurship from the University of Arizona. The school's president offered condolences Friday.

“Our hearts and prayers are with his friends and family,” President Robert Robbins said in a statement. “I can only imagine the deep sense of loss they must be feeling at his untimely death. It is always a tragedy when a young life ends before it has really yet to begin.”

This is the full statement from Henderson's family:

"As you can imagine, our family is devastated by the recent loss of our beloved son Bakari Jaward Henderson. He attended Anderson High School through his junior year and graduated from Hyde Park Baptist High School in 2013. Bakari attended The Eller College of Management at The University of Arizona on a full academic scholarship and graduated on May 12, 2017 with a BS in Business Finance and Entrepreneurship. The summer after his freshman year at University of Arizona, he interned with the Texas Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Texas State Senate. Bakari was in Greece working on a photo shoot to launch his new clothing line when the unbelievable tragedy occurred.

Bakari loved spending time with family and friends, traveling, and meeting new people. He was a big thinker and enjoyed coming up with new business ventures.

Bakari was an inspiration to all he met. He loved life and lived it to the fullest.
We would like to thank our family, friends and the Austin community for your prayers, love and support.

Phil, Jill, P.J. and Jory"
 

© 2017 USATODAY.COM


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