It was 8:07 a.m. on Thursday, November 4, 2021. Brody, our lanky, fun-loving cowboy had been found dead on the scene after being ejected from a speeding vehicle that rolled multiple times. When we got the call, we had no idea who the four other kids were or where they had been. No one wore seat belts. They were all ejected with injuries and another passenger died. Brody was only 17. He never liked attention, but now he’d be making headlines — 1 of 33 Youth Killed On Utah Roadways In 2021, who would never share another Snapchat. Life’s more fun when you live in the moment until you’re not alive.
We remember Brody as more than just a sad statistic. The youngest of three in a loving, faith-filled family, he was always on the move and ready for his next adventure. He was our lionhearted boy who brought home every stray, whether friend or dog. He had a generous spirit, and a remarkably quick, dry wit. A natural in the saddle, Brody spent countless hours working beside his father and uncles gathering cattle, learning “family first,” to never back down, and colorful language. He’d always planned to assume the reins and ride for the brand, continuing the family legacy as a sixth-generation rancher, but plans changed.
Our tight-knit community of 3,000 recalls Brody as a rambunctious, freckle-faced boy with a mischievous grin, and #72 on the youth football field. Coach M will remember him, not only for his determination to win, but also because he was the first responding officer to the accident, the person who identified his body, and the one who called and notified our family while we were in New Orleans for a friend’s memorial.
We didn’t get to see Brody go to prom, graduate, or become a welder. We’ll never know how tall he would have been (he was still growing at 6’4”) but he always stood up and cared for others. What we do know is that Brody video chatted us from our kitchen the night before he died. We told him we loved him and made plans to talk with him the next day. We never considered there were three other teens in our living room. They would leave at 12:45 a.m., with an unlicensed 16-year-old male driving because Brody was still recovering from a knee surgery that left him in a brace from hip to ankle.
Just like you, Brody knew the rules. Wear a seat belt, use a tracker app, don’t let others drive your vehicles—but he broke the rules and his neck. Brody was our comedian, gamer, sugar fiend, and shock factor. We hope he’ll be your shock factor, too. We love and miss him every day. Minors younger than 17 cannot drive in Utah from 12:00 a.m. through 5:00 a.m.
No driving with friends for the first six months. It’s the law, and it could be your life.