He may have only been 12 years old, but Neil Nahal loved to explore and had big aspirations.
“He always said he wanted to be mayor when he grew up,” recalled younger sister Sanna Nahal with a smile. “He had this golden aura — he walked into a room and lit it up. Everyone just gravitated towards him, he had a pure heart.”
“He was like an angel,” added fellow sibling Shawna Nahal, who watched with admiration as her younger brother toured with family through London and Paris a few weeks ago, taking great interest in the European art and architecture he spotted along the way.
But now friends will be left to wonder what could have been, as Neil was struck and killed by a car while aboard his dirt bike Friday just a block from his southwest Calgary home.
On Monday, family and friends alike deemed the corner where Neil was killed in the 1900-block of 10A St. S.W. dangerous, adding it was likely neither he nor the 16-year-old driver of the vehicle that hit him saw each other until it was too late.
Friends and family said Neil’s father Satpal Nahal always made a point of keeping a close watch over his son.
“We were, very, very close,” Satpal said. “He is my only son and my best friend.”
Sister Joti Nahal added, “We have the best dad in the world and we will always remember Neil as our angel.”
Neil’s three sisters and first cousin Sundle Sandhu spent an hour sharing numerous fond memories of him Monday afternoon. Sandhu, specifically, said the youngster always put a smile on her face.
Police have said they don’t expect charges to be laid in relation to the collision.
Neil would have turned 13 in two weeks and begun Grade 8 at nearby Mount Royal Junior High School in September.
Classmates, including Jaslynn Kanwal, set up a makeshift memorial on the fence bordering the school’s playground over the weekend.
“Everyone’s trying to hold up right now,” Kanwal said. “He was just a free-spirited person — he was the most energetic person I know.”
- Plans are being finalized to hold a memorial in honour of Neil Nahal at Queen’s Park Cemetery, located at 3219, 4th St. NW. Wednesday afternoon.