Devoted dad Darcy Brady says his two sons mean the world to him, but sadly half of that world was lost this week when one of those sons, Josh Jordan Brady, died in a car crash.
Friends of the family have since shown their support with kind words and tears, to the point that Darcy has found himself consoling those who knew his popular son.
"Josh was so loved by so many people," Darcy said during an interview on Friday. "He’s touched peoples’ lives so much."
Josh, 21, died on Tuesday morning when his 1997 Nissan Maxima collided head-on with a semi-trailer along Highway 242, about four kilometres south of the Trans-Canada Highway.
Witnesses told RCMP that Brady’s southbound car had crossed the centre line of the two-lane, undivided highway and entered the path of oncoming traffic.
The driver of the semi wasn’t hurt.
On Friday, RCMP Sgt. Line Karpish said police continue to investigate and haven’t determined the cause of the crash.
The collision happened around 7:30 a.m., and Darcy said Josh was driving to work at Anderson Building Movers Ltd. at the time.
Darcy had only bought the car for Josh a couple of weeks before so he could get to work, and Josh was going to pay his dad back.
Darcy said that the car was a reward to Josh, who’d proven to be a responsible young man who was on the right path in life.
"Josh was so proud of that car," said Darcy, who also bought his son a 2006 Harley-Davidson 883 Sportster motorcycle about a month ago.
Josh was born in Thompson but raised in Brandon, where he attended Vincent Massey High School.
Darcy was a single father as he raised Josh and his brother, Ryan, and the trio lived together in Brandon at the time of Josh’s death.
Father and sons were so close that they were known as the "Three Amigos," "Three Stooges," or "Three Musketeers," depending on the situation.
"They taught me what love was," Darcy said of his boys.
Josh was a loving and attentive son, said Darcy, who suffers from chronic back pain.
"I have mobility problems and he would go to the ends of the earth to help me."
Ryan, 22, has turned to Facebook to express his grief.
"A piece of my heart is gone," he wrote to his lost brother in one post. "I'm trying to hold strong, because I know that you admired how I could be strong when times got rough. I'm trying little brother, it’s just so hard."
The two siblings were "extremely close" and looked out for each other as they grew up, Ryan said in an interview.
Josh would comfort Ryan when he was upset, and when Josh was little and had a bad dream he would climb into bed with his older brother.
Even recently, when Ryan yelled out in the night because he has leg pain as the result of some nerve damage, Josh was there.
"My brother heard that," Ryan said. "He woke up and came to my room and looked inside, but I pretended that I was sleeping ... He just came and checked up on me. He just looked at me for a few seconds and then closed the door, and went back to his room."
Darcy said people were drawn to Josh’s big heart and outgoing personality.
That fondness for Josh and his family seems to have found its way to Facebook where family friends have posted a flood of messages of support.
There will be a prayer and memorial service in Josh’s memory on Monday evening and his funeral will follow on Tuesday.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition May 12, 2012