FAMILY SPEAKS OUT IN THE WAKE OF SON’S DEATH
Reporting by WVUA 23’s Chelsea Barton
Just days after their loved one’s accused killer was arrested for the second time, the family of Brentson Skidmore spoke out for the first time.
<p>“He loved his family, he loved his friends, and he loved his community,” Tina Gregory said of her son, Brentson Skidmore.</p><div></div><p><p>Ryan Gunning, 23, is accused of blindsiding Skidmore with a punch to the face in the early morning hours of Aug. 31 at Filling Station, a bar in downtown Tuscaloosa. Gunning was initially charged with assault, but that charge was upgraded Friday. He is now facing manslaughter.</p></p><div></div><p>“You never saw Brentson when he wasn’t smiling,” his stepfather, Chuck Gregory, said. “He was just always a happy kid. <span style=”font-family: ‘Open Sans’, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px;”>I don’t think the charge fits the crime. That’s just how I feel about it.”</span></p><div></div><p>Now, the Gregorys are asking why this had to happen to their son.</p><div></div><p>“It’s the most unbearable pain i have ever felt in my entire life,” Tina Gregory said. “I just thought about things being taken care of the right way.”</p><div></div><p>The Gregorys say they are praying for all involved, including Gunning and his family.</p><div></div><p>“I feel sorry for that young man’s family too because they are going through a trying time,” Chuck Gregory said. “It is not just us that is being affected by this. Brentson would think the same thing, you know? He would feel sorry for their family too.”</p><div></div><p>Brentson was honored at DCH Regional Medical Center last week as he was transported to UAB to donate his organs. Tina Gregory said this last selfless gift represents her son perfectly.</p><div></div><p>“That was such a blessing,” she said. “Just another way of him showing his good heart and that he always had something to give in return. Life will live on through him.”</p><div></div><p>Skidmore’s memorial service will be held Sunday at Memorial Chapel Funeral Home. A celebration of life will follow at the VFW Post in Cottondale.</p>