“It means a lot because a lot of the time Jesse felt like he was alone. It shows him that he is not alone. We were here the whole time.”

TOLEDO, Ohio – Friends and family of Jesse Babiuch, a man whose body was found in the Maumee River after a canoe overturnedrecalled the father of two during Friday’s vigil.

“It was a nightmare for our whole family, our children, his friends,” said Grandma’s sister, Emily White.

White says her brother was the core of their family and that he would do anything for them.

“He was so caring,” White said. “He would give the shirt off his back. He had the brightest smile.”

Babiuch and his friends were canoeing on the Maumee River near downtown Toledo on Sunday when the boat overturned. Babuch’s friends swam to the shore, but he disappeared.

On Wednesday, rescuers found Babuch’s body in the river.

“It was stressful, it was hard, it was devastating,” said Grandma’s close friend Trinity Morris. “I can’t even put it into words. It was unreal.”

Grandfather was 21 years old, he was the father of two girls under the age of three. Friday’s vigil gave the community an opportunity to remember the father, brother, son and man that Yessi Babyuch was.

“It means a lot because a lot of the time Jesse felt alone,” Morris said. “It shows him he’s not alone. We were here the whole time.”

Friends and family collect money for the funeral. If you would like to make a donation, click here.



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