Monsignor William J. Bradley of Blessed Sacrament Church in New Rochelle broke down in tears at each mass yesterday as he shared with parishioners the tragic news that just hours before his grand-nephew Paul Bradley, 18, had been killed in an automobile collision in Monmouth County, New Jersey.
"The family is devastated", Msgr. Bradley said on the telephone. "At 18 years of age he had his whole life ahead of him". Msgr. Bradley will be giving the homily at the funeral on Thursday in Middletown, NJ.
Paul Bradley died when a car he was riding in struck a tree on Cooper Road near Route 35 shortly after 2 AM Sunday morning. The car, a 1992 Honda Accord, was being driven by Bradley's friend Adam Sofio, 18, of Red Bank, NJ. Sofio lost control of the vehicle. Bradley was pronounced dead at the scene at approximately 3:10 AM according to police. Sofio, along with John Vogel, 18, of Middletown, another passenger, were seriously injured.
Paul Bradley was seated in the front passenger seat. Adam Sofio was driving the car. John Vogel was a passenger in the right back seat. The pair are being treated at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, NJ. Police are seeking to determine if drugs or alcohol were involved and, if so, may bring criminal charges against Sofio.
During Sunday mass, Msgr. Bradley placed a photo of Paul Bradley on the altar. He asked for prayers for the family in their time of need. Msgr. Bradley has helped his family cope with a similar tragedy before. In 1976, his nephew Billy, then 17, was killed in automobile collision in Norwalk, CT.
Paul Thomas Bradley, 18, of Middletown, died Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011. He was born in Walnut Creek, Calif. and moved to Middletown at the age of 5. He attended Fairview Elementary & Bayshore Middle School. He was a former member of Boy Scout Troop 240 and a graduate of Middletown High School North's class of 2010.
Surviving are his parents, William and Paula Bradley; sisters, Heather and Christina Bradley; grandmother, Gladys Maxwell; grandparents, Tom and Sally Bradley; and aunts, Ruth Simpson, Mary Terese Campbell, Eileen Kyriacou and Janine Carlson.
Paul was preceded in death by his grandfather, Tex Maxwell.
Visitation will be from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, March 2 at Mary Mother of God Church, 19 Cherry Tree Farm Road, Middletown. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, March 3 at Mary Mother of God Church. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Paul's family to help establish a memorial fund in Paul's name. For more information, to send condolences or for directions, please visit www.pflegerfh.com.