Tributes to Halifax 20-year-old former soldier ‘with a heart of gold’

Heartbroken loved ones have paid tribute to a beloved young Halifax man who died after being hit by a bus in Sowerby Bridge.

By sarah fitton
Tuesday, 7th June 2022, 6:02 pm

Josh Highley, from Lee Mount, could not be saved after the accident on Burnley Road near its junction with Tuel Lane on Friday evening.

A former soldier, he was well-known and loved in Halifax, and his family and friends have been left devastated.

Josh's girlfriend of three-and-a-half years Cody Mcleod said: "He was the loveliest guy and would give you his last penny. He had a heart of gold.

Josh Highley, 20, from Lee Mount in Halifax, who died after being hit by a bus in Sowerby Bridge

"He was a grafter. When he had a job he enjoyed, he worked hard."

"He was funny and when he went to a party, he brought it alive. He loved dancing, music and beer."

The couple met on a night out in Halifax when Josh was still in the Army. He served for two years with The Yorkshire Regiment, including a tour in Cyprus.

Josh, who has an older brother, grew up in Boothtown and Ovenden, and went to Trinity Academy in Holmfield.

Josh Highley, 20, from Lee Mount in Halifax

He has been working for Micheldever Tyre Service in Elland - a job he was enjoying, said Cody, 19.

"He enjoyed his life," she said. "He liked going to his mates and playing Xbox games. We used to go for meals and walks together, and to play crazy golf in Leeds."

"He was well known and had a lot of friends.

"He was always laughing and in a bad situation, he would try to tell a joke to make people laugh."

Loved ones have paid tribute to Josh Highley, 20.

Cody and many of Josh's friends have been laying flowers and other tributes to Josh where the accident happened.

Daniel Vanloon, one of his closest friends, said: "He had the best of hearts - he always looked out for those who needed it.

"He was the lad trying to liven the crowd up.

"He worked. He made sure if he didn’t have anything, he worked for it but if I didn’t have anything, he’d be the lad to lend you his, if not give you it.

"He’d be the lad who’d come to hospital with me when I broke my arm.

"It’s not going to sit right with many that he’s gone - but he’s gone, the only thing we can do for him is smile."

In a statement, Josh’s family said: "We are sad to announce that our much loved son and brother Josh Highley passed away on Friday.

“Josh will always be in our thoughts and will be deeply missed by all his family and friends.

“We request that we be given privacy at this difficult time.”

The driver of the bus involved in the accident on Friday was arrested on suspicion of drug driving. He has been released under investigation.

Police are appealing for anyone who saw what happened or may have dashcam footage to get in touch.

Information can be given via www.westyorkshire.police.uk/contactus quoting log 1282 of June 3 or by calling 101.

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Man dead after bus accident in Sowerby Bridge