WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Two days after a Marine was fatally stabbed in Waikiki, friends with him that night say they tried desperately to save his life.
William Brown, 23, was with four other friends when they left a going away party in Waikiki.
Around 1 a.m. Saturday, Lauren and her boyfriend Brian say they were waiting on an Uber when they were approached by a group of teens who tried selling them marijuana.
When Brown and his friends refused, that's when Lauren said the chaos broke out.
"A lot of us were shouting like 'Look, we don't want any trouble just go and just get out of here,'" Lauren said.
Lauren said she was then attacked by the group of teens.
Brown, Brian and their other friend Fred jumped in to help.
"Immediately, they decided they were going to take her purse from her and they started assaulting her and jumped on top of her," said Brian. "That's when me, Fred and Will just tried to pull them off, then everyone was assaulting us and it was just a chaotic mess."
Brian says about 15 seconds is all it took before the attackers, roughly 15 of them, ran off with Lauren's purse.
Brown was lying on the ground.
"When Fred got to him, he just said 'I've been stabbed,'" Brian said. "Fred took his shirt off and tried to plug the wound and some other bystander was there to provide chest compressions and I provided the breathing and tried to do CPR and help him through."
Brown, a 23-year-old Tennessee-native who joined the 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marines about five years ago, died shortly afterward at the hospital.
"Will was just trying to protect Lauren, you know," said Brian.
"He is the kind of person who always puts everyone ahead of himself, even in his last moments," Lauren said holding back tears.
Lauren suffered a concussion, black eye and lacerations during the altercation. Her purse was later recovered.
Brian now wears Brown's bracelet. He says he plans on giving it to Brown's mother at his funeral.
Arrangements are being made in Brown's hometown in Tennessee.
"Will's mother wanted it to be known that he was known for his infectious laugh and beautiful smile and his memorable hugs, he'll never be forgotten and is truly loved by so many," said Brian.
Honolulu police charged a 16-year-old boy on Monday for second-degree murder.
Two other suspects, a 21-year-old man and 15-year-old girl, were released pending investigation.
Police are still asking anyone who witnessed the stabbing to come forward by calling CrimeStoppers at 955-8300.