Dateline triple murder, QC connection

Published: Nov. 8, 2019 at 10:38 PM CST
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A Dateline story with a Quad Cities connection - two servicemen were killed in the Philippines and the likely suspect was also killed. Earl Duke Bourdeau was one of the servicemen, from Davenport. The other, Larry Risken was from Washington. Both married the same woman, Sonia Rios about 20 years apart, and are believed to have been killed by her as well.

Bourdeau's body is now in Davenport, over twenty years after he was murdered in the Philippines. The search continues for Risken's.

"My brother was murdered over $25 in a jeep. That's what they got from him," said Duke's brother, Dennis Bourdeau.

Duke was stationed in the Philippines with the Marine Corp where he met his wife, Sonia Rios. Dennis Bourdeau told TV6's Montse Ricossa a few years into their marriage, Duke had a bad feeling and wanted his brother to fly to the Philippines. However, Dennis couldn't get a passport in time, "I called my bother back and told him I tried every way I could to get somebody to help me. And 18 hours later he's dead. Murdered in the Philippines. I tried to get him back but Sonia said he wanted him in the Philippines."

The family though wanted Duke buried in Davenport, Iowa. Decades and thousands of dollars later, Dennis knew he couldn't give up on his brother. "Sometimes you don't know whether to give up because everybody else tells you, 'you know he's dead you just need to forget it.' You can't. You really can't. They're a part of you. You grew up with them, you lived with them. And you just can't let it go."

Duke's body found in the Philippines. Now, Duke is buried in Davenport next to his parents. His tombstone decorated by his brother.

However, Larry Risken's body still hasn't been found. Dennis pleads if anyone knows anything about Larry's body, they come forward, "it'd be a blessing. Because without him and they're not here, you just can't put it to rest. And it's like since my brother's been murdered, I've blamed myself for not being able to be there to help him when he needed help and I let him down."

Dennis wants Sherry, Larry Risken's sister, to find the same joy he has. "It's probably the best feeling in the whole wide world. Kind of like your first kid. It's so exciting and you've got all this love for him and there's something to look at and love and be a part of it."

Sonia Rios, the suspect in both murders, was killed in California in 2007, just one year after Larry Risken was killed in the Philippines. So at this point, they have no leads on where Risken's body is. Dennis Bourdeau hopes his story and Sherry's can help lead to the discovery of the body, and closure for their families.