, 2023-04-28 11:44:35,
When Natalie Kelly lost her brother Nelson Kelly in a Sept. 2021 car crash, the grief of losing her “best friend” was almost too much to bear. After all, the siblings had been “attached at the hip” since they were kids. Their mutual love of the sport known as disc golf, formerly known as frisbee golf, made them even closer.
“I was really good at throwing the disc, but he’d still make fun of me, in a loving way,” Natalie, who lives in Ontario, Canada, tells Yahoo Life about the flying-disc sport, with rules similar to those of golf, played on nine- to 15-hole courses. For years, along with their mutual friend Stewart, the trio became avid disc golfers, routinely going on day trips to various courses to laugh, play and forget about their problems. Those are the moments Natalie misses the most.
“When he was killed, it crushed us all. I know my life is always going to be a little bit worse without him, and I have to live with that somehow,” she says. Since Nelson’s death, Natalie has paid tribute to him in a number of ways — including a tattoo with the letters “DEGU,” which was on his license plate. “It stood for ‘don’t ever give up,’” she explains.
Her level of devotion reached new heights last year, when she and Stewart commemorated the one-year anniversary of Nelson’s death by writing a special message on a few disc-golf discs — smaller and denser than regular frisbees, designed to fly faster and farther — and placing them at their favorite courses, hoping fellow players would enjoy a game in honor of his memory and share their experience on social media.
“This disc is in memory of Nelson Kelly,” the message reads. “Please toss this hole for him, then leave on next hole for next player. If found on last hole, please take to a new course. Post pics on IG, #NelsonKelly952.”
Natalie also created an Instagram account, where she routinely posts photos and fun memories of Nelson’s life: “I loved him so much, I want to keep his legacy and memory alive with this disc and account,” she captioned the first post, featuring an image of one of the discs.
What happened next was unexpected: In the…
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