Brave Sokol, a resourceful young man who, because of his love for his homeland, exchanged a comfortable life in Zagreb for the hell of war in Vukovar.
Velimir Đerek was born in Imotski as the youngest of three children in the family of Ante and Zorka, née Tomasović.
He spent his childhood playing with his two older sisters Senka and Rajka. When he was only seven years old, he lost his father. He finished primary school in Imotski, after which he moved to Zagreb. He was a catering worker by profession.
Velimir was very resourceful. As soon as he came to Zagreb, while still in high school, he got a job as a bag carrier in Esplanada. Over time, he became a receptionist there.
He was a favorite in society, he liked to play football and basketball and he was also a favorite among girls.
When the war broke out, he decided to join the fighters in the defense of Vukovar. He made that decision already in June 1991. That was the last time he visited his family, and he was the only one to reveal his plan to his sister Rajka.
- Sister, I'm going, because Vukovar doesn't defend itself here in Zagreb, neither in the marble Esplanade nor on urban cafes, it defends itself with weapons, only and exclusively on the Croatian border, and I'm going! - he told her.
Then Velimir went to the priest, confessed and said goodbye to his friends. He took a rifle and went to Vukovar. He was a member of the 204th Vukovar Brigade. Because of his courage, his comrades nicknamed him "Sokol". He fought at the Fairground, where fierce battles were fought.
On Monday, he called from Vukovar to congratulate his niece on her fifth birthday. Sokol soared forever in the sky at the age of 27, having been killed by an enemy shell.