After the wedding, I went off to Northland for more schooling and didn’t hear much from Bryon and Missy. He joined the Army and they moved to Hawaii where he worked as a truck mechanic. In his spare time he also played for a football team called the Hawaii Warriors (or something like that). Then one day, during a military training exercise, Bryon fell off the back end of a boat and had part of his hand severed by the boat’s propeller. That led to a medical discharge from the military.
Our paths crossed at the Memorial Day gathering at Camp Peniel shortly after Katie was born (probably 2001 or 2002). We talked about cars and the blue Saab I had just bought. We also talked about his injury and what the Lord was teaching him. It seems that his experience on the football team had caused him to lose his spiritual focus. Afterward, he began to think about what the Lord would have him do. He told me he was thinking about becoming a youth pastor and that he’d like to serve under me some day. That was the last time I saw Bryon.
I received a call Wednesday afternoon from a pastor friend who informed me that Bryon had been in a car accident. The news report says that he and a friend were driving on a country road and “failed to negotiate a right curve with the car traveling off the roadway, striking several trees.” His friend sustained minor injuries but Bryon didn’t make it. He was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.
Bryon was 35 when he passed away. He left behind his wife Missy, and three children: Allison, Joshua, and Emmalee. It will be especially difficult for them to handle the loss. It certainly wasn’t something they were expecting. But his unsaved brothers and sisters are also taking it hard. Without the Lord, they have no comfort about their brother’s death. Though you may not know the family, would you take a moment to pray for the family.