Candlelight vigil honors victims of boating accident

Published: Jun 08 2013 10:52:56 AM EDT
MUHLENBERG TWP., Pa. -

About 200 loved ones turned out to Jim Dietrich Park in Muhlenberg Township to remember two friends who tragically lost their lives.

Cody Moyer, 20, and Jonny Velez, 21, lost their lives last weekend in the Susquehanna River, in Peach Bottom Twp., York County after their boat capsized.

Many say the Muhlenberg High School graduates were more than friends, they were brothers.

"Basically I lost two sons," said Michelle Velez, mother of Jonny Velez.

Getting through the agony has not been easy, and as Cody Moyer's father explains, it has truly been a group effort.

"We have his [Cody's] close friends, you know, over all the time," Moyer said. "They slept at our house last night. They crashed on the floor. One boy's been with us. He cooked us breakfast."

Someone who knows this pain first hand is Brandon Allen.

He was on the boat with Johnny and Cody when it capsized.

Miraculously, he fought the currents and made it back to shore.

Still traumatized, Brandon wasn't able to comment, but, for his parents, the moment is bittersweet.

"It's the worse thing that ever happened to me in my life. I know my son made it, but I'll miss Jonny and Cody so much," said Barry Allen, Brandon's father.

"As much as we're so thankful our son made it, we just miss the other ones so much. It's a very difficult time for everybody here," said April Allen, Brandon's mother.

Cody and Jonny will be remembered, Saturday, at a joint memorial service at The Calvary Lutheran Church in Laureldale.