HERRIMAN, Utah -- Herriman High School Senior Bryson Hathaway was laid to rest Wednesday, a week after the deadly crash on Bangerter Highway that took his life.
The funeral was held at Herriman High School, and the lobby transformed into a memorial with pictures and tributes, as friends, family, and classmates packed into the school’s auditorium for the service.
Dustin Pearce, Herriman High football coach, explains why the school is such a fitting place to say goodbye to Hathaway.
“Bryson was the ultimate Herriman kid," Pearce said. "He loved the H. He loved the Mustang. He loved the school."
A week ago, the campus was a different place. Police say 17-year-old Hathaway rear-ended a school bus on Bangerter Highway on his way home from school. He died on impact.
Football teammate and good friend Jaren Kump saw the wreck.
“On my way home I saw the accident, but I had no idea it was him,” he said.
Hathaway played football and baseball at Herriman High. Sophomore Tyson Garza says Hathaway was a natural born leader, on and off the field.
“Always on the football field too, practice telling people where to go," Tyson said. "Kids didn’t know their assignment, he knew everybody’s assignment from the quarterback to the lineman."
Hathway’s father also coached both of those teams, making the Hathaways an integral part of the Herriman High community.
“The football team went over to Coach Hathaway’s house the day after. It was hard seeing him, honestly,” Jaren said.
On Wedesnday, the school served a different purpose. It became a place to share memories.
“I got into some trouble with grades and he’s always been there keeping my head on straight," Tyson said. "If he saw I wasn’t in class he’d call my mom and say, 'Hey, he’s not in class.'"
“Everyone was saying the same things: His smile. He played like he was 10-feet tall,” Jaren said.
It became a place to remember a son, a brother, an athlete, and most importantly, a friend who lived a short but full life.
“Hug your kids a little closer to you," Pearce said. "Say I love you often. Don’t take things so personally and live life with a smile. That’s how Bryson lived."
A GoFundMe page has already raised more than $35,000 for the Hathaway family. You can donate here.