In junior and senior high school, Jared Zook was the type of friend who would buy Dan Johnstone french fries at lunch or give him money for the vending machine when he couldn't afford it.
Zook, who is from Edmonton, has been identified by friends as one of five men killed in a crane collapse at a Kelowna, B.C., construction site on Monday.
"This was just a really, really nice guy," said Johnstone.
"It's just so tragic that a nice individual like that who was only 32 years old is now off this Earth and is gone. It's tough."
Police confirmed the fatalities at a news conference on Tuesday.
The Kelowna building is under construction, and workers were preparing to dismantle the crane when something "catastrophic" happened, Kelowna RCMP Insp. Adam MacIntosh said Tuesday.
Four men killed were subcontractors
MacIntosh said four of the men who died were subcontractors working on site. The crane's operator is believed to be among those killed.
A fifth man was working in the office building next door and wasn't associated with the construction project. His body was recovered by search and rescue teams at about midnight local time.
A GoFundMe has been created for Zook's parents to help cover funeral costs, lost wages and travel.
"Our lives are infinitely better for having him be a part of them," reads the description on the fundraising website, which is signed by the Goerzen/Zook family.
Johnstone found out about his friend's death after seeing news about the collapse online. He knew Zook was working in construction, but hadn't seen him in about three or four years.
"I just got super busy. He got busy. We were always texting. And we always just do the obligatory, 'Hey, let's meet up for lunch one day,' " Johnstone said.
"We never actually met up because you just think that time will always be there and you don't realize how busy you get sometimes."
Looking back, Johnstone wishes he'd taken the time to catch up with Zook.
"I wish we could have met up for coffee or made it work, because you'll never get that time back and you realize how precious time is, because you only get one go around the world."