feel as indignant as those who are."
- King Solomon
In the early morning hours of Saturday May 17, 2003, less than 24 hours before his 36th birthday, my brother was killed by a hit and run driver.Two people from West Virginia, the driver, Brandon Lee Brogan and his passenger, Mark Daniel Urban, altered our lives forever when they hit my brother and left him to die on Hwy 17 N in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
Jay's wife lost not only her loving husband, but her best friend.
Their boys lost a caring, compassionate father and teacher.
Our mother and father lost their only baby boy.
I lost my brother, my friend and my confidante.
Through the years when friends have asked about my brother, I couldn't help but smile. I always said, "he's one of the greatest guys you could ever know". Jay was always quick to lend a hand to whomever needed it. He was always smiling and you could even hear the smile in his voice.
Jay had just recently completed work on the custom built motorcycle, "SPIKE", that was on the cover of the June 2003 issue of Easy Rider magazine and he was excited about being at the Myrtle Beach Bike Rally to talk to his fellow biker comrades about it.
Jay had worked all day at Biker's Boulevard in Raleigh, NC and then headed to the beach on the black custom bike that he'd built for himself. He stopped for a brief visit with our mom. She wanted to give him his birthday present. He left mom's and drove on to Myrtle Beach. He'd only been there for a few hours, but he was ready to call it a night, head in and get some rest.
Although their story is quite different, it seems painfully obvious that the driver and passenger of the car that killed my brother, ran the stop sign. Jay was traveling at approximately 35 mph when he collided with their car. The driver and his passenger, who was the actual owner of the car, kept going. Somewhere down the road, they did bother to stop and check their vehicle for damage and decided to head home to West Virginia. Apparently they couldn't be bothered to stop and check on Jay.
We were informed that they were afraid of the bikers and that's why they fled to the safety of their home and family. Even though Bike Week was officially over on Sunday, Jay's birthday, these boys didn't turn themselves in until Thursday May 22, some six days after they killed my brother. Myrtle Beach authorities pleaded to our sympathies by letting us know that the family of the boys that killed my brother had to use their rent money to fund their return trip to Myrtle Beach to turn themselves in. We don't know how they funded their original trip to the beach.
After turning themselves in, the boys were allowed to return to St. Albans, West Virginia. They killed my brother who was a US Navy Veteran and were allowed to return home for Memorial Day. To date, these boys have not been charged, arrested, detained.....NOTHING!
The driver will attend his high school graduation services tomorrow, May 29, 2003. Something seems so very wrong that this young man is allowed to carry on with his life as if nothing has happened.
Our lives will NEVER be the same.
Almost two weeks after Urban and Brogan killed my brother they were charged with "leaving the scene of an accident with death involved". They were released from the detention center on their own recognizance less than 24 hours after their bond hearing.