Father grieving loss of son in double fatal stabbing: ‘I’m always proud of him’


NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. (WPRI) — What was supposed to be a birthday celebration turned violent when a 19-year-old man stabbed his two friends to death and seriously injured a third Thursday night.

Daniel Randall is accused of fatally stabbing Aidan Hanrahan, 21, and Joshua Lemken, 21, both of North Attleboro at Randall’s Birch Road home.

A third man – identified as Erik Lunstedt, 21, of North Attleboro – was also stabbed and is said to be in serious, but stable condition at Rhode Island Hospital and is expected to survive.

Todd Walter, Lemken’s father, said all of the men were friends and had gathered to celebrate Hanrahan’s 21st birthday.

Walter said he had dropped his son off at Randall’s home Thursday night – just as he had several times before. He said his son was trying to protect his friends from being stabbed by Randall.

“We try to teach our kids that people are good, and you can be safe and trust people, but people aren’t safe and some people aren’t good,” Walter said.

Walter said he is proud of his son for quickly jumping into action to protect his friends. He said his son was home on medical leave from basic training for the U.S. Army.

“He left a little sister who still doesn’t understand her brother is in heaven, he left a little brother who now no longer has a best friend,” Walter said. “He left his mom and me wondering what could have been.”

Lunstedt’s mother, Chanan LaCombe, tells Eyewitness News he also sprung into action to help his friends. She said her son is caring and loving.

“He’s a big teddy bear,” she said. “He’s always there for people.”

(Erik Lunstedt, courtesy of Chanan LaCombe)

LaCombe said her son was stabbed several times in his face and neck. He recently underwent facial surgery and is expected to recover.

But while he will recover physically – she said it will be difficult moving forward after what happened.

“He lost his best friends,” she said.

Randall told investigators he pulled the knife on his friends because he believed the three of them were going to jump him for drugs. Police said none of the three men were armed.

Walter said seeing Randall charged and behind bars isn’t justice, but he says it’s better than nothing.

Randall was ordered held without bail Friday and is due back in court in October.

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