A well-known Toronto firefighter killed in a motorcycle crash in North York is being remembered as a kind and energetic man whose energy was infectious.
Stuart Bryan, 30, died in hospital after his motorcycle was involved in a collision in North York Wednesday night.
Investigators said that at around 7 p.m., Bryan was heading north on Leslie Street near Corning Road when his motorcycle was struck by a Jeep that was exiting a private driveway on the west side of the street.
He was rushed to hospital with serious injuries and later died, police said Thursday morning.
Bryan, who worked at Station 145 in North York, was also a fitness trainer and former lifeguard and appeared on the cover of this year's Toronto Firefighter Calendar.
“He loved the fire service, wanted to do his best in the fire service and portrayed that in the way he presented himself around the hall,” Toronto Fire Capt. John Martin said Thursday.
Martin described Bryan as an “energetic” member of the team who enjoyed what he did.
The Toronto Professional Firefighters Association posted a notice online Thursday calling Bryan’s death “sudden and tragic.”
"Our sincere condolences to friends and family of active member FF Stuart Bryan who passed earlier today. In our hearts & minds...," the association wrote on Facebook.
Speaking with CTV Toronto, Bryan’s girlfriend Athena Pantaleo said she feels “numb” since learning of his death.
“Sometimes I’m just sitting here saying nothing with friends and family,” Pantaleo said.
She said Bryan was kind and compassionate and got compliments on his smile all the time.
“You feed off that – it’s positive energy,” she said.
That same positive energy was evident on Bryan’s social media accounts, where he tracked his growth over 10 years from a self-declared unfit kid “who didn’t know what a gym was,” to a fitness cover-model on the 2017 firefighters calendar.
While Bryan was proud of making the cover, Martin said it came with a fair bit of friendly teasing from his colleagues.
“We gave him a good time about that,” Martin said.
The Richmond Hill Lifesaving Club said in a post that Bryan also worked as a lifeguard, instructor and deck supervisor at Centennial pool for eight years from 2004 to 2012 and expressed sadness at his sudden passing.
“Our sincere condolences to Stuart's family, friends and colleagues,” the club wrote.
The driver of the Jeep was not injured in the crash.
The cause of the collision is still under investigation.
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