Ron Huxell Memorial Fund
On Tuesday, May 10th, 2016, my Dad left for work from our house in Hemet to begin his 150 mile round trip daily commute to Indio. Early as ever, he finished replying to one last email question before work, kissed my mom goodbye, and got into his 2013 Volkswagen Beetle (a diesel, of course, my dad being a total diesel guru).
Now, I've been on countless drives with my Dad, as you can imagine. My entire family has. After a lot of discussion, we all agreed he always put his seatbelt on during every drive we could remember-- just not always right away. Sometimes he needed a gentle reminder from my Mom, and other times something would just click in his mind, shortly followed by the click of his belt. In all newer cars, such as his Beetle, which would give off a few chirps every 3-4 minutes when the driver isn't buckled in, this delayed-belting tendency of his improved drastically. He would -always- have his buckle on by the third, and in rare cases the fourth chirp, no prompting from mom needed. His hard hearing from decades of using air and power tools meant he could miss the first couple sets of chirps, as well as his need to tune into the correct talk radio station and make sure his daily Diet Pepsi was situated properly in its cup holder.
My Dad was less than 7 minutes away from our house when he approached the same two-lane bend in Ramona Expressway as a 20-year-old Hemet kid and his little brother travelling the opposite direction. According to the kid's testimony, he briefly fell asleep at the wheel, tired from a long night helping his family move. He drifted over into my Dad's lane.
The Saturn sedan hit Dad's VW at the most unforgivingly catastrophic angle possible. My Dad instantly lost his rear driver side wheel, causing his Beetle to overturn and roll multiple times.
Less than seven minutes from home. One, maybe two chirps max. Just barely shy of the three he needed to ensure his seat belt was fastened.
Ronald Wayne Huxell, the most important man in my life, my role model, a man who touched the lives of so many, more than I ever knew, was ejected through the sunroof of his Volkswagen.
Witnesses to the accident, who waited with my Dad for emergency response, told us he was immediately knocked unconscious. He had a laceration to the back of the head, as well as a broken wrist and hip. However, what prevented the doctors from saving him was severe internal bleeding, brought about by his body being quickly and violently forced through the sunroof. The witnesses told us his face, however, was unscathed and handsome as ever.
The Hospital pronounced him dead at 7:30am.
The 20-year-old and his brother suffered minor injuries, which didn't require medical attention. Their Saturn, when seen next to my Dad's Beetle, escaped so intact I couldn't help but deem it shockingly unfair.
My Dad, as so many of you know, never once thought about himself. He lived first and foremost for his family: his wife, Sonya, his three sons, Blake, Adam and I, and of course his youngest daughter, Brooke. Since before I can remember, my Dad worked tirelessly Monday through Friday, with the occasional Saturday, always leaving early in the morning just before I got up for school and getting home just before I went to bed. He always said that if he had a single regret, it was only that he didn't spend enough time with us kids.
My Dad moved to Hemet from Ohio, at the age of 10, and grew up in poverty unparalleled to the situation of anyone I've ever met. He grew up in the back of his Mom's antique shop, the fourth child among five. He always told us kids we should've grown up poor, because being made to do without forces one to find true happiness, which I always understood as the joy gleaned through enriching others, as opposed to the emptiness resulting from material enrichment. However, he was always quick to add that he hated poverty more than any adversity he'd ever been faced with, so much so that he could never, and would never, allow us to experience it.
The countless hours my Dad slaved over monstrous Ford Diesel trucks were all for us. All of the profits went to seeing we hardly wanted for anything, as long as it furthered our happiness, productivity, or success. His needs, and especially his wants, fell by the wayside. Even convincing him to trade a bone stock basic '92 2WD Toyota Pickup for something with modern amenities was a multi-month process. Even then, his humble choice of a VW Beetle left me wishing he would treat himself in at least some aspect of life, especially since he spent by far the most time out of any of us Huxells behind the wheel.
After his family, my dad looked after anyone who needed him, especially if his unrivaled automotive repair skills were called upon. My Dad was, without question, the most honest and knowledgeable automotive technician (he always scoffed at the title mechanic, correcting us kids if we applied the term to him and insisting it made his work sound like the oversimplified chores of a moron) the west coast, and to my knowledge, the world, has ever known. Now, I may be a bit biased, but I know almost everyone reading this would agree. He began the trade at 14 in his dad's shop, and was perfecting his skills almost every day until the age of 53.
Despite my Dad's unmatched commitment to his work, it was no secret that he lived for the weekends. My siblings and I have the best memories of our lives vacationing anywhere and everywhere with our Dad, starting the occasional Friday night and ending late Sunday. This was the only time we got to truly spend with our Dad and we relished every moment of it.
Ron Huxell was an amazing man and human being. Most of you knew him as a lighthearted jokester, though only he understood a lot of his puns and antics; as an extremely helpful soul, who couldn't relax unless every person around him was doing the same; as the pickiest eater of his age, who often said he'd starve before he ate a fish or vegetable; as a man loved immensely by the massive group that called him friend or family, and hardly disliked even by the minute handful that called him otherwise; as one of the very few selfless people to come out of this world, who would do anything for those he cared about rather than even consider thinking about Ron.
Thank you so much for reading this and remembering the incredible spirit that was my Dad.
This GoFundMe Campaign is beginning relatively late after the accident, as my family and I were reluctant to accept donations on behalf of Dad's prideful and stubborn, yet purely generous soul. It was only after having an unexpectedly large amount of requests for a GoFundMe, coupled with the tragic yet unavoidable action of paying for my Dad's funeral with money he was saving for our next vacation, that we agreed it should be done.
The $9,000 goal is the cost of his funeral. I'm very excited for my mom at the thought of reaching this goal. I know my dad would never believe the scope of the response to his departure. He always semi-jokingly said he didn't have friends. Of course I knew otherwise while he was still with us, and witnessing the reaction to his passing, I don't think I've known any man with quite so many friends. As I said in the beginning, he touched the lives of so many, more than I ever knew.
Any funds over the goal will go to my amazing Mother, Sonya Huxell, a widowed mom currently putting two kids through college, and still raising two more, on a fourth of the income she's used to and, more tragically, without the man she fell asleep next to for 33 years.
Thank you again for reading. Also, thank you from the bottom of the Huxell family's hearts for those who wish to donate in memory of Ron Huxell. Expect a personal thank you as well. Rest in Peace Dad, knowing you cultivated an unfathomable amount of love throughout your 53 short but legendary years on this Earth.
-Corey Huxell, on behalf of the Huxell Family
I wish so much that I could see Ronnie's reaction to this love-driven phenomenon and see him realize the amount of people's lives that he touched. The irony of it all is that he really thought that he had very few friends and was so humble. He would be even more awe struck than we are.
We are also so humbled, grateful, and truly lost for words at how quickly the initial goal was achieved, and at the rate it continues to grow. There's no imaginable way we can thank everyone enough for what we are witnessing.
I am so sorry for your loss , and thank you for this update and donation page , I am on many Diesel forums and your dad was our Hero with his free video's and stellar knowledge of diesel repair. He is missed greatly and we hope his how to videos will always be available and help to keep his memory alive! RIP DTR Ron and my condolences to the Huxell family and friends. Zmann on behalf of the Powerstroke. Nation and Powerstroke. Org
Corey, My name is Dwayne, my pseudo is Larry La Roy. I hope you would afford me the inconvenience on your part to hear my story of your Dad. He helped me in 2013 as a new 6.0 F250 owner once it quite running and I had to dig into troubleshooting. I discovered him on YouTube and knew the first time I seen a video that he had the natural knack to not only own these vehicles with knowledge, but also to teach others because he actually had the passion to truly help his fellow human being in life that was struggling. Long story short, he explained in the videos everything I needed to be able to avoid the high cost of someone else turning wrenches on my truck. Because the FICM was a possibility but I didn't think it was bad, I replaced it simply because I wanted one of his rebuilt ones to avoid the future possibility of a failure. Any how ; I later had a complete engine failure in the 6.0 from other issues and he called me to verbally explain how to verify this so I could feel good about having to speed the money to replace the engine. Yes, selfless! I told him in a You Tube message that because I work for Amazon and often travel for training, that if I ever made it out to CA in his area, that I wanted to treat him to lunch. This is why tonight I was looking him up to message him that I was going to be in Ontario on the 15th and wanted to fulfill that offer. I am so stricken with grief right now that even this is hard for me to write. Please accept my most heart felt condolences and I will help your Mom gladly. Please just remember one thing and if it makes sense to you, pass it on to your siblings. I am 49 and my Dad passed when I was 23. I remember now that my grief was over whelming in the beginning, but as the years went on, all that went away with time and nothing but the good parts remain and the only bad now is that I still miss him. I salute DieselTechRon with the most perfect USMC salute and I to will miss him like my Dad. May he rest in peace.
I am so deeply hurt for your wonderful family. I cannot even begin to imagine your pain. I have watched many of Ron's videos. He was such a kind and knowledgeable man. Just last night, I changed an alternator in a snap after watching his video. This morning I left a very thankful comment in the reply section under the video. I decided to read some other comments. I was shocked to read that sadly, Ron had passed away. I immediately Googled his name and found the 23 minute video made by the Corey and Mrs. Huxell. I continually wiped tears during the whole video. You both have amazing strength and a deep love and respect for Ron (dad). His character is reflected in both of you. I'm so, so sorry for your great loss! A tree is known by the fruit it bears, and I could easily see what a wonderful family Ron had. His legacy will live on through you all and through the many wonderful videos and people he helped. I know it may not be much, but I made a $50.00 donation through PayPal to the family. I cannot express enough my appreciation for Ron's videos. I'm sure he went to Heaven because he was all about selflessly helping others. I hope you may find a little comfort from my comment and be strengthened. I will say a little prayer right now and will try to say one often for you all. I wish you could feel some of your pain leaving you as I hope to bear some of it from you. May the great Creator comfort you all of your days and watch over your family throughout the generations to come. You have the essential. You have love.
I really don't know where to begin. First of all I want you to know what a great guy I feel Ron was. Though I did not know him personally, through his videos I felt like he was a friend. He has helped me out so much and though there were other videos out there covering some of the same info I always found myself coming back to DieselTechRon because he just had a way about him that made me feel more confident in whatever repair I was attempting. I just learned of the accident and am shocked and saddened by this huge loss. I sincerely enjoyed your tribute to your fatherhusband. I think you really summed up how we all in the diesel community felt about him. He had more friends out there then he ever knew. He will always be remembered as The Diesel Tech. My condolences to his wonderful family.
First I would like to say I am so sorry for your loss. My husband and I just started listening to his videos yesterday because his truck broke down and I thought maybe videos on you tube would help. We discovered the horrible news while looking for his video on how to program the scangauge II he talked about in another video. He sounds like an amazing man with a heart big as this earth. We were both saddened to hear about his accident even only knowing of him for 2 days. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family through these hard times. Prayers from the Taylor family in Virginia.
I just sat down and I was looking for a Diesel Tech Ron video to watch. I just heard the news. I feel physically sick! Your father was the best teacher I ever had, and I never even met him. My heart goes out to the family and the whole diesel community. We lost a great man, a great teacher, and a role model in the diesel industry. R.I.P my brother.
I sent your Father fish (he said it would go to his son.) and donated money to his webpage . We successfully repaired our vehicle because of your Father's help (and some others) and I was looking forward to his help in the future. I can imagine your loss is great; his selfless way of helping others affected many people. Goodbye, Ron.
I am so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine saying goodbye and then seeing the person you love the most in the world not come back. Countless times I wanted to email Ron and tell him what excellent videos he created. It was a help to anyone working on diesel trucks. You could tell he was a caring individual, a talented technician who deemed quality of work the most important aspect of his job. I will miss him and my prayers are with you and your family. A great fan.
What an incredible man. I spent hours watching and rewatching his videos. He was so incredibly generous to the diesel community and individuals like myself. I never met him, but my heart is terribly heavy tonight after learning of his passing. My prayers are with you guys...
I never had the pleasure of meeting Ron but between a little bit of email correspondence and watching his videos he made it clear he was an awesome guy. Very helpful, very knowledgable, and an all around nice person. It was so shocking to hear of this. My condolences to his wife and children, he will be remembered.
It a tragic loss to lose a man like him tragically he always came to our rescue on our cars. He help my daddy and us Multiple times early in the morning it didn't matter he was always was there. He is one of a kind!!!! You know he was a super kind MAN who loved his family. Just saying he was different than anybody, he cared!!!!!?
I'm so very sorry for your loss. My sons went to school with your brothers and attended a bday party for Adam and I also remember one of you giving a speech at graduation and thought wow what an amazing family and gifted smart children. My prayers are with you all ✝
for all of your help Ron. I hope it helps your family to know that I carry on your legacy by helping anyone I know with powerstroke problems diagnose and fix their trucks because you unknowingly helped me fix problems I've had and get me back on the road. You will be missed and may the inspiration you have provided all of us imaginary internet friends be infectious and ever lasting.
I am horribly saddened to hear of your loss. I bought a 7.3 a few years ago and Ron was my "Go To" guy when looking for advice on repairs. After running fine for quite awhile, it's developed an oil leak and I'm now sitting here stunned to find out about his untimely passing. Rest in peace Ron, you had a rare passion for your fellow man.