CENTRAL VALLEY (News4Utah) – Family and friends are remembering Hunter Syddall, the 18-year-old man who was killed in a motorcycle accident Saturday.
Hunter’s family said they were there when Hunter was competing in the RMX series race. They witnessed him crashing on the course at the Bunker Hill Dirt Race Track in Delta.
“My dad was the very first one to him. My dad saw him go down. I’m an EMT. so my mom yelled and I ran over as fast as I could across the track. I got to him and I could see he wasn’t there,” said Shelbee Syddall, Hunter’s sister. “That was really hard. You never think you’re going to have to respond to your own family.”
Since Hunter’s passing, his family said there’s been an outpouring of support from the community. Dozens of people changed their profile picture on Facebook to his racing picture, students at both South Sevier and Richfield High schools are wearing #30 for Hunter’s racing number, and numerous houses in the area changed their lights to orange to honor him.
“The racing community is a very tight-knit community. Anytime someone in that community goes down, it affects them all tremendously,” said Shailee.
Hunter’s sisters said he started racing at 11 years old, inspired by his dad who was also a motocross bike racer.
“His first bike was a 50 that he got for Christmas and it snowed. He was probably 5 years old. He’d come out on the lawn in the snow and he almost wrecked into the wall because he was so excited,” said Shelbee.
Shelbee said racing came naturally to Hunter.
“He went to his first race and won it all and that was the part that hooked him,” said Shelbee. “Hunter got good quick. One day it just clicked for him and he got fast.”
“His dream was to race. That was his dream and he told my parents, ‘Please let me chase it,'” said Shailee Syddall, Hunter’s sister.
Hunter won numerous race trophies and awards in his seven years of racing. His ultimate goal was to make it to the Loretta Lynn race. But even when his eyes was on the prize, Hunter’s best friend said he still put others first.
“I remember someone went down on the track and he didn’t care, he pulled off to make sure they were ok. He didn’t care if he won the race, he was always looking out for others,” said Jaren Anderson, Hunter’s best friend.
The Syddalls said they find comfort knowing Hunter left this world doing what he loved.
“We do not regret was putting him on the bikes because that was what gave him life. It may have taken his life but it was also his life. It’s who he became. Those bikes made him who he was,” said Shailee. “If he had to go, that’s how he would have wanted to go.”
Shelby said he was one month away from graduating high school and submitting his mission papers.
“Faith was big to him. He was always known as the one that would pray before every race,” said Shelby.
Shailee said even though Hunter was the youngest of the family, he was the protector and had a knack for bringing people together.
“There’s two communities here. He was going to South Sevier High School but switched over to Richfield High last year. Usually when you do that, you’re hated. But he wasn’t. He brought the two communities together,” said Shailee.
Jaren said Hunter was kind and went out of his way to make others feel important.
“I’ll never forget the day I met him. He’s two years older than me, but he took me under his wing. He would never let others talk badly about anyone,” said Jaren.
Shelby said Hunter had a zest for life and inspired other people to follow their dreams.
“He’s always say, ‘I want to inspire and I want to help people live in the best way that they can. He just wanted people to be happy,'” said Shailee. “He wanted to be a motivational speaker.”
The Syddalls will be holding a memorial ride at Hunter’s funeral this Saturday, April 7. To donate to his family’s funeral expenses, click here.