KINGSVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — Family and friends are remembering a National Guard Soldier killed outside of a Baltimore County nightclub this weekend.

Those who knew David Collins remember him as charismatic, a loving father and patriot.

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“He was the life of the party,” Chris Lang, Collins’ friend, said. “Brightened up the room.”

Collins was stabbed to death outside Excape Nightclub in Baltimore County after an argument at the front door moved to the side of the building.

“It was a tragedy that took place that night,” Lang said.

Collins served nine years with the Maryland National Guard in the 175th Infantry. He was a Paratrooper and Scout, as well.

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“It’s a shame you can’t even go out for a guys night and not make it home,” Lang said. “It could have happened to anybody.”

The suspect, Joshua Edwards, is now charged with first-degree murder. He was already out on bail awaiting trial on drug charges and had been previously convicted of armed robbery.

“What happened to him should not have,” Lang said. “The person who did this should not have even been out of lockup.”

Charging documents show Edwards told police he pulled out a folding knife out of his pocket to scare collins. Edwards ended up severing his finger before police say he fatally stabbed Collins.

Friday morning, a representative from the Maryland National Guard read a statement from Collins’ fiance and sister:

“We ask during this tragic time not to mourn for David. He would not have wanted that. Instead, remember the good times you had with him, and embrace your family a little tighter for ours.”

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A fundraiser page for Collins’ family has raised nearly $25,000.

Paul Gessler