9-year-old dies in UTV accident; remembered as smart, athletic kid
April 28, 2015
Craig — Jaydon Earl Sidener loved flag football, fast cars and technology.
"He was a 9-year-old little boy that had a heart of gold and that just loved his iPad," said his father, Kevin Sidener.
Jaydon died Friday evening in a utility task vehicle accident off of Moffat County Road 78. His father began work three weeks earlier as a sales and finance manager at Cook Ford in Craig, and he and his family were visiting from Parker to look for a house the day the accident happened.
"He was my kid that said, 'Dad, it's okay if we move to Craig. We can leave what we have behind. You're happy at your job and you can teach me how to ride a dirt bike, and we can learn how to live in the mountains,'" Sidener said.
Sidener had been staying with Cook Ford General Manager Kevin Harvey during the week and commuting to Parker on weekends. His wife, Courtney Sidener, had planned to return to Parker Friday with their 12-year-old daughter Morgon and Jayden, but the family chose to stay the night.
Harvey was driving the UTV when the accident happened around 9 p.m. Sidener and Morgon were also passengers, and Morgon sustained only minor injuries to her knee.
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None of the occupants were wearing helmets or using the vehicle's safety restraints, according to Moffat County Sheriff K.C. Hume
Hume said Jaydon died as a result of head injuries sustained when the UTV rolled over onto its side, pinning the boy against the ground.
Jaydon was in the fourth grade at Cherokee Trail Elementary School in Parker. He was born and raised in Grand Junction until the age of 6 and moved to Parker with his family three years ago.
He loved sports, especially flag football, but also basketball, soccer and karate. An avid technology user, he was also always there to lend a helping hand to family members who struggled with their latest devices.
"He was a techy kid," Sidener said. "His grandma couldn't figure out how to do stuff on her new iPhone so he helped her program (it). He knew more about the new technology than the bigger kids."
On Monday, Jaydon’s teacher and his sister's teacher brought their classes together to release lime green balloons — lime green being Jaydon's favorite color — into the air in his memory.
"The support has been overwhelming," Sidener said. "We've had people stopping by every single day and giving their blessings."
Sidener spoke of the outpouring of support on a Facebook page set up for Jaydon by a friend, which already has over 400 members and close to 1,000 photos, according to Sidener, as well as stories and remembrances of Jaydon from friends and family.
The Sideners are staying with family in Grand Junction while preparations are made for Jaydon's memorial service Thursday. Those who attend are asked to bring a favorite match box car to place on Jaydon’s casket — commemorating his love of Mustangs and fast cars.
Services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at Canyon View Vineyard Church in Grand Junction followed by the burial at Orchard Mesa Cemetery.
A memorial fund was set up by the Cook family and Harvey, and contributions may be made to the Jaydon Earl Sidener Memorial Fund at either Yampa Valley Bank in Craig or at any Wells Fargo branch nationwide.
As for the future, Sidener said he doesn't yet know whether he and his family will carry through with their plan to move to Craig.
"We're going to take some time to grieve and go through this process and see where God leads us," Sidener said. "It's our friends and family and our faith that's going to get us through this."
He said the family plans to return to Parker Saturday in time for Morgon to play in her basketball games Sunday.
"We know that these are our children, these are God's children. We were only lent these children, and we don't know how long we're going to have them for until God calls them home," Sidener said. "I just really believe He wanted that child home now. He has special plans for him, and he's going to be an amazing angel."
Contact Lauren Blair at 970-875-1794 or lblair@CraigDailyPress.com.