FORT COLLINS, Colo. — A Colorado Marine killed in a crash in Utah last week was on his way home to surprise his little brother on the first day of school.
Lance Cpl. Brennan Ching, 20, of Fort Collins, Colorado, died Friday in a rollover crash on Interstate 70 near Salina in central Utah. He was traveling with a fellow Marine, Jesus T. Paredes, from Las Flores, California, where Ching was stationed. Paredes, of Fallbrook, California, survived and was hospitalized. His condition was unclear Wednesday.
Their pickup truck rolled after Paredes overcorrected when it went off the highway, Utah Highway Patrol spokesman Dwayne Baird said.
The Coloradoan reports that Ching called his sister Sarah Ching, 23, earlier on Friday to say he was planning to take his brother, 8-year-old Alex Vicary, to his first day of second grade.
The newspaper published a story about Ching coming home to surprise Alex last March after the little boy sent a letter to the Easter bunny asking that his brother be brought home.
Mother Sue Vicary said the two shared "a special bond," with Ching teaching Alex how to tie his shoes, taking him fishing and reading to him almost every night when he was home. She said Alex talked about his older brother every day and came up with different wishes to try to bring him home.
Alex didn't know about this brother's latest trip. After finding out he had died, Vicary said he picked up a leaf and made a wish that his brother would come back to him.
"All these times, he's believed and seen that his wishes would come true," she said. "But there's no amount of leaves he can pull to make that come true."