Students remember Henrico teacher killed in boating accident

By Tara Morgan - bio | email
Posted by Meg Thalhimer - email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - A Henrico school teacher killed in a boating accident is being remembered by former students and their parents.

Amanda Brady, 25, was among 10 people on a boat when it hit a channel marker on the Rappahannock river Monday night.

Brady taught 5th grade at Longan Elementary school in Henrico's West End. Parents described Brady as a phenomenal teacher who had a close connection with her students. Her classroom door is turning into a shrine, as mourners stop by with flowers in Brady's memory.

Eleven-year-old Chandler Howerton left behind a rose. Her death is difficult for him to take.

"I saw her a month ago and now she's gone," said Chandler.

Chandler was one of Brady's students two years ago, his brother the year before.

"She understood me really well," said Chandler.

"She was just a very nice teacher and helped me focus. I was a big reader and she helped me focus more on math," said Chandler's brother Alex.

The boy's mom broke the sad news to her two sons about the tragedy on the Rappahannock.

Divers recovered Brady's body 10 hours after the speed boat she was riding in, with nine others including her fiancee and his family, crashed head-on into a channel marker.

"This is just absolutely devastating. It's beyond words," said Anne Howerton.

Howerton says Brady had a one-of-a-kind relationship with all her students.

"She was thoughtful, kind, and considerate and very strict, which was great. But, strict in a way that kids would listen to her and they loved her," said Howerton.

As Chandler tries to make sense of it all, one memory stands out. 

"The one thing I will never forget is her smile, it was just so nice and down to earth," said Chandler.

We reached out to some of Amanda Brady's friends on Facebook and they declined interviews. They wanted to pass along their prayers to the families. One described Amanda as a bright and loving person, who was well-loved especially by her fiancee, who was injured in the boat crash. 

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