Man who died in Newport News crash remembered as ‘fun-loving,’ ‘fearless’

Jonquay Kyron Byrd

NEWPORT NEWS, Va  (WAVY) — One person died in a head-on crash Monday in Newport News that police officials said involved a department employee.

Police say officers were called to the intersection of Jefferson Avenue and Ivy Farms Road, and found a crash blocking lanes.

Investigators determined that a 2015 Hyundai sedan crossed the median and collided head-on with a 2011 Volkswagen. The crash blocked lanes in the area for a few hours on Monday.

Fire department crews got the driver of the Volkswagen, 23-year-old Jonquay Kyron Byrd, and took him to the hospital with life-threatening injuries. Byrd died at the hospital two days later.

Police officials confirmed Thursday morning that the crash involved an off-duty, non-sworn Newport News police aide.

On Friday, 10 On Your Side spoke with Byrd’s two older brothers and his aunt. They told our Deanna LeBlanc he was not just the kind of person who lit up a room, but who walked in dancing.

“My brother always had a strong sense of knowing who he is or was as a person. very loyal to his family, very loyal to his friends. He was fearless,” said his brother Martel Price.

His family says they’re still working to process their loss.

“Like a bad dream that we all need to kind of wake up from. It just doesn’t seem real,” his aunt added.

Byrd’s family is extremely close-knit. They are leaning on each other for support. Jonquay would have turned 24 two days before Christmas.

“Jonquay is energetic, charismatic, fun-loving, loved basketball, ball is his life,” explained his other older brother Jamar Price. His family says Jonquay was leaving a basketball game driving to his mother’s house when he was hit.

“I would say keep your loved ones close and cherish them. Cherish the time that you have with them,” Martel Price told 10 On Your Side. “We have no regrets in terms of our relationship with our brother we can say. Because we did everything together as a team, the three of us.”

Newport News Police tell 10 On Your Side neither speed nor alcohol are considered factors in the crash.

The police aide involved in the crash was identified Thursday as a 60-year-old man from Suffolk. Police said he was hospitalized with injuries that were not considered life-threatening.

People in that position are responsible for providing support to sworn personnel, and to provide a “variety of public assistance public information, and departmental support,” according to the department’s website.

Police said investigators will be meeting with the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office to determine whether charges will be filed.