One of the four cadets who died when the vehicle jumped into the water is remembered as an outgoing athlete who was proud of his efforts at the Royal Military College of Canada.
Andrey Hongshiu had a special way to make people comfortable and acted like a “well-trained class clown,” his high school friend Noah Kim said in an interview.
“He was just one of those who made everyone laugh.”
22-year-old Hongshiu was in a car with Jack Hogarth, Broden Murphy, and Andres Sarek when he entered the waters adjacent to the Kingston, Ontario campus. Each man who was ready to graduate died at the beginning of Friday.
Defense has given little detail about the fatal incident, saying that four people died after one vehicle entered the waters of Point Frederick on campus around 2 am. Investigation is in progress.
Hogarth was engaged in military and strategic research and wanted to be an officer of the Armored Regiment, the Pentagon said.
Murphy, a business administration student, worked to become a manager of the aerospace environment. Sarek, a military and strategic research student, also wanted to be an armored officer.
Honciu also studied business administration and was planning to become a logistics officer.
When Hongshiu returned to Toronto on vacation, he often told his friends that studying was hard and required a lot of work, Kim said.
Honciu proudly said it, Kim said, feeling happy that his friend was happy to face the challenge.
“It was a baby’s step towards what he wanted to do in the future,” Kim said.
Kim said he was initially threatened by Hongshiu when he first met him in a math class as a freshman at North Junior High School in Toronto, but Hongshiu took the lead in breaking the ice.
“We ended up talking a lot in math lessons, probably more than studying,” Kim said.
The pair also enjoyed playing football and football together and motivated them to improve each other through friendly competition.
Kim said he also remembers his love for Hongshiu’s younger brother. Kim said he would accept the new role and share the pair’s photos together throughout high school after first questioning how to behave around the baby.
“He finally leaned on the side of’I’ll be the best brother I’ve ever had’,” Kim said.
“As you know, it’s all very, very sweet, so I just know he has a really big heart.”
In a statement, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the four deceased family members and friends were traumatized, and RMC commander Jose Curts said the entire university community had been devastated by its loss.
A defense spokesman said details about the memorial service would be given at the wishes and discretion of the victim’s family.