A Scottsboro man and his brother are turning their grief over the horrible deaths at the Jackson County Park Marina into a tribute to lost friends.
Two brothers, Andrew and Alex Utech, lived on Dock B, the same dock that caught fire on Monday, leaving 8 people dead. Almost every day they tell WAAY31 they interacted with the victims, including a family where the mother and five children were killed.
Alex Utech lived on Dock B for a year and a half. To him and many others, it was home. Learning his close friends died in the fire was devastating to him, and now he and his brother are making sure those victims are never forgotten.
"Across the back [of the boat], we're going to put every one of their names of the victims that were lost, and put on the top, in memory of the victims lost at Dock B," Utech said.
Utech is fixing up his boat that sunk in Dock B back in July. The name "Plain Jane" is stretched across the back of the boat, but soon, it will have a new name.
Well, 8, actually.
"We're going to do it in memory of Dock B and all our friends and hopefully one day when it's built back, the boat will be over there again," Utech says.
Utech says the time he spent on that dock holds some of his best memories. He met friends who quickly became family, including Annette Miles and her 5 kids.
"I remember that Joe and Annette Miles, they would always come over to our boat just about every day, to see our son and hold our son," Utech said.
Whether it be a karaoke night on the dock or a fish fry for everyone, Utech says it's the people who made it all so special. He says he will do whatever it takes to help the family of the victims, because to him, that's just what you do if you lived on Dock B.
"I mean, we would take off our shirts and give it to them if we had to, and I know they would do the same for us," he said.
Utech is also a musician and part of the Interstate Quartet in Scottsboro. His group will be one of many performing on Feb. 21 in the Jackson County Strong concert.
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