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Brody Hinz, 18, died in the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

Humboldt crash victim Brody Hinz remembered in touching tribute

By Kristy Woudstra

A beautiful tribute to Humboldt Broncos statistician Brody Hinz helps all Canadians better understand the person he was.

Hinz, 18, volunteered for the Saskatchewan hockey team. Tragically, he was among the 16 people who have died after the team bus collided with a transport truck last Friday. 

"I never knew that it would be the last time that I [could] see you when I dropped you off at your house last Sunday after church," wrote Yoonjin Park Bott on Facebook the day after the crash. "I didn't want to believe it at all... I just wanted to hide my sorrow. But no, I want to share how awesome you were when you were with us."

Park Bott and Hinz attended Humboldt's Westminster United. In her post, she describes him as mature, thoughtful, kind and always willing to help when needed. "Thank you for your support," wrote Park Bott, who runs the church's Sunday school program. "You told me church means a lot to you since you grew up in our church community since you were 5. I felt that you always wanted to be a helpful person around the church. It so inspired me that every week I saw you in our Sunday school room."

Park Bott remembered her friend's passion for sports and that he dreamed of being a sportscaster. She also commented on his thoughtfulness when North and South Korea were recently in the news. "You asked me friendly questions about my country and showed your concern... Thanks for your prayer and support."

Hinz's kindness was also remembered by The Soup Kitchen, a non-profit organization that Hinz, his mom and sister regularly volunteered for. 

"Our hearts were broken as we heard about the passing of Brody Hinz," read a Soup Kitchen post on Facebook. "Brody was always willing to help out without any hesitation."

“His character was second to none," James Folster, co-ordinator of The Soup Kitchen, told Global News. "He was helpful, polite, kind, loved to work with people, loved children — just an all-around good guy.”

Westminster church members gathered on Sunday morning to remember Hinz. "There's a lot of tears, but we leaned into each other," Rev. Brenda Curtis told CBC News. She went on to say: "He's changed this community, there's no question about it."

Park Bott's post dedicated to Hinz echoed the minister's sentiment: "We are so sad. So sad that we can't even put the right words together today. But we will remember. We will remember your wonderful attitude towards your life."

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