Goodbye to Skye, Courtney and Baby

'Please continue your journeys with the same attitude and energy that Skye and Courtney have set as an example. This will be their true legacy'

Where have you gone and what have you done to make the world the best that it can be?

That is the question Brent Buck asked the thousands of people who took part in a memorial service Saturday for Skye and Courtney Buck and their unborn baby boy.

Buck said his son and daughter-in-law lived their lives as teachers, students, athletes and travellers with the intention of making the world a better place, and they would want others to do the same.

"Please continue your journeys with the same attitude and energy that Skye and Courtney have set as an example. This will be their true legacy," he said.

The service was held in the Clearwater secondary gymnasium and broadcast via videoconference to the school's drama room and the Henry Grube Education Centre in Kamloops.

More than 250 people gathered at Henry Grube for the emotional two-hour service, which mixed anecdotes from family and friends with passages from the Bible and songs about hope and loss.

Many wept openly and laughed at humourous stories about Skye's antics on the Thompson Rivers University basketball team and Courtney's fear of mice. Others stared at the floor with somber looks on their faces.

Buck said the one thing more frightening than public speaking is enduring the loss of a son.

"The only thing that's giving me strength up here is that Skye and Courtney and Baby Buck are looking down on me and expecting me to do a good job," he said.

He then thanked the Clearwater community and nearby First Nations for their support and prayers.

Skye and Courtney Buck's vehicle left Highway 5 on the night of Dec. 9 and crashed into the river at a bend known as Wolf's Corner, 17 kilometres south of Clearwater.

The couple's vehicle was found the next night. Skye's body was inside the vehicle. Courtney's was located late last week.

Skye was a math teacher at Clearwater secondary and Courtney taught Grade 1 at Raft River elementary.

Buck was joined by his wife, Tracy, and daughter Wynter. Courtney's parents, Rick and Cathy Dekelver, and siblings Rachel and Chris, also shared stories about the couple's love for each other, their generous nature, and their excitement at being parents.

Baby Boy Buck, as he is now known, was due in late January

"I am deeply saddened that I will never see him, never see him grow up, and never see his parents grow old," said Tracy.

She said Skye and Courtney chose to live in Clearwater because they wanted their child to enjoy the same small town experience they had growing up.

Courtney's brother, Chris, struggled through tears as he talked about his "little big sister." Chris said he and Courtney were close despite having different personalities.

"She was always looking at the big picture. I was living life in the moment," he said, and cried.

"I can't do this," Chris said, then stepped away from the podium and hugged his family.

Friends talked about how the couple met in high school and, despite a brief breakup, remained devoted to each other until the end. They also spoke about Skye's accomplishments on the basketball court and his sportsman-like nature.

Jeremy Meehan grew up with Skye and Courtney and said their deaths have punched a hole right through him.

But he's glad it's his friends who are now in Heaven and him who is left mourning the loss, said Meehan.

"I can't stand the thought that they might have this unbelievable cross to bear," he said.

Clearwater secondary principal Alan Stel hosted the service. The town's mayor and school trustee, John Harwood, delivered the couple's eulogy.

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