The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

November 25, 2012

Slain man’s girlfriend seeks justice

— Brandon Hydrick and Bronwen Murray met about a year ago at a charity run.

Brandon, an avid runner and outdoorsman, was participating in the UPC Krispy Kreme 5K, and Bronwen was handing out T-shirts to the winners.

The two didn’t know each other but they had a mutual friend at the event.

“I needed a date that night to the Margarita Ball, which supports Toys For Tots, and Brandon agreed to go with me. So, it was kind of a blind date.”

The two dated casually at first, but within a few months they were serious about each other.

“We were inseparable, always going everywhere together,” Bronwen said. “Canoeing on Piney Creek, hiking with the dog or catching a movie at the Athens drive-in, it didn’t matter, we were in love and had fun, whatever we did, wherever we went together.”

The couple had been together about a year when one indelible moment shattered their bliss.

The shooting

Hydrick, 26, died in a pickup truck driven by his 25-year-old brother, Ryan, on Sept. 29 in southern Limestone County. The brothers had been roasting hot dogs and marshmallows at a Piney Creek campsite with some friends on land owned by the Murrays. They were driving home in the early morning hours, when they got lost in the Fennell Road area and stopped. Joel Patrick Moyers, 52, was living on Fennell Road in a mobile home owned by his mother. Moyers saw the Hydrick truck, thought it looked suspicious, grabbed his AK-47 assault rifle and a flashlight and walked toward the pickup. As Ryan drove toward Moyers, Moyers tried to get the occupants to stop so he could get a tag number. Realizing Moyers was armed, Ryan continued past him.  Moyers then fired a single “warning shot” into the air, he told investigators. However the shot, which investigators said was not fired into the air, struck the truck’s tailgate, penetrated the cab, pierced the back seat and killed Brandon.

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