'Everyone loved him': Family friend pays tribute to Josh Hydes after Meadowhall crash
A heartbroken family friend who watched Josh Hydes grow up from a young boy to a man with ‘everything to live for’ has described how ‘everyone loved him’.
Josh, aged 20, died alongside his 24-year-old uncle, Tommy Hydes, when the car they were travelling in ploughed through railings on Meadowhall Way and plunged into the River Don below last Saturday night.
A major rescue operation was mounted to recover the submerged car from the fast-flowing river and release the trapped men, who were taken to hospital and later pronounced dead.
Josh, who was behind the wheel of the white Mercedes GLS at the time of the crash, was in theatre with surgeons battling to save his life when his heartbroken mum, Emma, arrived at the hospital after police officers called at her home to inform her of the incident.
Despite their efforts, Josh, who worked at the University of Sheffield’s finance department and had just passed his accountancy exams the week before, could not be saved.
Emma’s best friend, Mandy Royston, said Josh’s death has devastated his mum and three siblings - brother Tim and sisters Keeley and Amber – his nannan, aunties, uncles and cousins.
“Emma has lost her son and half brother, she is devastated. Tommy used to live with Emma for a while, so him and Josh were as close as brothers,” said Mandy.
Describing Josh, she said: “Everyone loved him. He was the golden child. He was going places.
“Josh had just passed his accountancy exams the week before he died, he had everything to live for and was going to show everyone how far he could go. Cars, a mortgage, he had dreams which I know he would have put into reality, he was already starting to.”
Josh, who lived in Kiveton with his mum and siblings, grew up in Aston.
Shattered friends have flooded social media with tributes to him in the wake of his death and flowers have been left at the crash scene.
Family friend Mandy said: “Josh’s family is strong, but this has broken them all to pieces.
“Josh would do anything for anyone. If you needed him or anything, he would be there. He was so generous.
“At his school prom, he was presented with two awards on the night – one of them for his smile. That says a lot.
“He would hate that I have set up this fundraising page but you never expect to have to bury your children. This is to help Emma give him the funeral he deserves and to celebrate his life.”
Josh’s heartbroken but proud mum said: “His awards at his school prom were for the biggest sweetheart and cheekiest smile.
“He got top results in all his exams and always cheered people up when they were feeling down.
“God knows where he got his brains from. We always said we were given the wrong child at birth. He was fantastic with numbers from a young age.”
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