A warrior’s heart, driven by love in all he did
According to Cindy, Kyle’s mother, he was fierce in all he did; in athletics, in loving his family and friends, and fierce in loyalty to those he cared about. Kyle loved life and embraced it fully. He was unique. “He was my Pitbull, relentless at times, like badgering me over and over to open just one present sitting under the tree before Christmas.”
Kyle served as the captain of his high school football team, played every position, and won every athletic award possible. He was a coach’s dream in every sport he played and a great teammate who always acknowledged other players’ abilities. Kyle had “mad skills” in most sports and received a division two scholarship to Mars Hill College in North Carolina after graduating from Westminster Christian School, in 2010. He also earned an associate degree from Miami Dade Community College and planned to finish college at The University of Miami.
When Kyle was nine, his parents bought him a red go-cart for his birthday. Because they lived on an island, it was safe to take it anywhere. He drove the security guards at a large condo complex crazy by slipping under the gate arm that blocked cars. Kyle told his mom later that they had a picture of him in the security shack as someone to watch out for. “He was always pushing the limits,” his mom stated.
Kyle worked seasonally as a driver helper for UPS and for his aunt in her kitchen and bath design and installation business. He and his brother, Logan, played sports together, sometimes double-dated and took the family boat out for fun. Kyle’s one love from age 14 was Alexsa. Though Kyle’s addiction broke them apart as a couple, they remained best friends. Alexsa is still close to the family and misses Kyle terribly.
The family traveled together to Costa Rica, Hawaii, Europe, and other places to have adventures together. His mother stated, “In times of recovery, he was strong and so loving. We surprised him by arranging a snowboarding family vacation. He was so thankful because he thought he didn’t deserve it.” Just before Kyle passed away, he gave a speech at his father’s 60th birthday party thanking his dad for never giving up on him.
Kyle’s anxiety grew with his illness. He lost the friends he would have laid down his life for. Kyle saw them achieving in life, though he had previously been the leader they all looked up to. “He was stuck in the stigma of shame,” his mom said. Kyle’s illness took a huge toll on the family. “Your whole life becomes consumed with trying to get them help,” Cindy said. We were always reminding him how valuable he was to us and his Lord.”
His mom lives on for him, working on drug legislation, helping others get into treatment, and educating families with the knowledge she has gained through her own experience. “I never wanted this work, but God put it in my lap the day Kyle took his last breath after being poisoned by Fentanyl,” she said. Kyle shows up from time to time sending a pelican, a butterfly, and once, a young manatee who accompanied his mother as she snorkeled. “The sea always calmed both of us,” she said.
Kyle’s mother, Cindy Dodds, provided the information for this narrative.
May 11, 1992-September 26, 2016
Age 24-Lived with the disease of addiction 7.5 years