In Memoriam

In this photo, taken February 8, 2001, Brad was taking the Oath of Office as a Troop Guide for the Golden Eagle Patrol. He was working on completing the requirements for Star Rank. His parents, Matt and Gail, and his brother, Chris, are a great Scouting family.

Troop 23 First Class Scout Bradley Silchuck passed away on Sunday, February 18, 2001 after a long and brave struggle with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Brad will always be remembered as a boy who loved Scouting and who lived the Scout Oath and Scout Law to its fullest.

Though his involvement was so severe that he could only use his thumb and index finger to control his wheelchair, he rarely missed a meeting and always cheerfully participated to the best of his abilities. His fellow Scouts were proud to help him hold his hand up to say the Scout Oath.

We have been enriched and inspired by Brad's presence among us and will miss him greatly.

Spirit of the Eagle Award

On Thursday, May 17, 2001 Troop 23 honored Bradley's memory with the Spirit of the Eagle Award. This National award is given by the Boy Scouts of America to the families of youth members of BSA who have passed away.

  • Visit the BSA website describing the Spirit of the Eagle Award
  • Read the Script used by Troop 23 for Bradley's Spirit of the Eagle Award

The Bradley Silchuck Award

Troop 23 has created an Award to honor Bradley's exceptional Scout Spirit. This award can be made once a year to a Troop 23 Scout who has best exemplified Brad's Golden Spirit of Scouting. You can't earn this award. You have to live it. A special medal was created and struck for this Award.

  • View the Bradley Silchuck Medal

Brad's Memory Page

I'm a Star scout and the SPL of Boy Scout Troop 25 in Red Oaks Mill, NY. On behalf of the whole entire troop, I would like to give my condolences and to say that a couple of years ago a member of our troop passed away from Downs Syndrome, so we all feel your pain and know what you're going through. Please know that you always have a friend in Poughkeepsie, New York. God Bless.

Billy Richardson

Poughkeepsie, NY

This is one of your fellow Boy Scouts saying that even though I didn't know you, I still learned that no matter what the cost, I should always continue to be a Boy Scout and do my best, to God and my Country, and always obey the Scout Law.


Eric Vargas

Troop 1509, Alexandria, VA

As an Eagle Scout, it saddens me to hear of such good Scouts taken away at a young age. It is good to see that he had the spirit of scouting in him.

Scott Heidemann

Decatur, IL

Just a word of "thanks" to Troop 23 Scouts and Leaders for asking me to be a part of Brad's "Spirit of the Eagle" ceremony. This was the first such ceremony held in our council and it says a great deal about Troop 23's Scouting ideals.

May all of us have Brad's determination "to do my best" when we face our own adversities.

Yours in Scouting,

Carl Laub

Troop 32, North Woods District

I know Brad from what Marianne and Bates Noble have told me about him, and from the many entries in his memory book. Clearly, he has had a tremendous impact on many in his short life with us. He has left us with a difficult challenge: to accept that he is no longer with us physically, and yet he stands alongside us while we marvel at a majestic lake or mountain valley as we travel a hiking trail, and sits by us as we enjoy an evening campfire. He is a free spirit now. He has taught us much by his example. Let us not forget him. God bless Brad, his family, and his troop.


Tony Carbo, ASM

Troop 10, Barrington, Illinois

Crew 476, The Lakota Dancers

I was a member some years ago of Troop 161 Arlington Heights, IL, USA - Northwest Suburban Council. Having been in Scouting Boy and Man Queen Scout, BP Award to Wood Badge Training, I am now the Asst. Chief Commissioner - 'Rover Explorers Scouts Association'.

The Founder - Ray O'Deh - and I were reading your story of Brad and his life and we felt that we would like to pass on a word or two.

It is often spoken of young people that they have no guts or courage and that they have no feelings for honour, truth and the Scouting way - This young man has given back some of the reasons I and the Chief first took up Scouting as Wolf Cubs as small boys. I wish I could thank him (Brad) personally for his life and his scouting, yet know that this is only a dream. I will however pass on this young man's story and I know that it will encourage many.

Thank you all for sharing the story of such a brave young man. As BP would have said - It is a good thing if we can leave this world a little better than we found it. Brad has certainly done just that.

Your brother in the family of Scouting

Ray O'Deh - Founder & Chief Commissioner

Ray Hampton - Asst. Chief Commissioner

Rover Explorer Scouts Association

Times Passed - Troop Advisor (Troop 161 - Our Lady of the Wayside)

Ray Hampton

London, UK

Having been involved in Scouting for nearly 35 years, and as an Eagle, after reading the postings here in Brad's memory, I can say without reservation that Brad was indeed Eagle material. The Spirit which makes an Eagle is far more than just badges earned or time served in Scouting, and there are those who are never awarded the rank, but live those qualities nonetheless. This was one such Scout. I would be proud to have a young man like Brad as a brother Eagle.

From Troop 93 in Uncasville CT, farewell, brother.

James F Hodgdon Jr

Bradley will be remembered for all eternity, but not because of his disabilty, but because of his courage and his will to fight. Bradley wasn't just another disabled teen, he was a great kid, and we could see that, all of us could. When we looked at Bradley, we saw a cool friend, and when we looked at Bradley we saw not a wheelchair, but we saw a very active and lively runner. We didn't care about Bradleys' appearance, we cared about Bradley. So I think I speak for all of us when I say, "We're with you buddy on earth and in heaven!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I'm just upset because, why did this have to happen? I never got to say goodbye.

In conclusion, I'd just like to say "Good Luck buddy, we'll miss you all down here so much." I'm so sorry, Mr. and Mrs. Silchuck. He was a great kid. And I'll bet he was an even greater son.


Joseph Rosel

(soon to be a scout in Troop 23)

If Brad had seen me, he probably wouldn't have recognized me, but I knew him fairly well. Sometimes I would go with to my brother's Boy Scout meetings and it made me wonder how he could go on every day knowing that there was so much he would probably never be able to do. I would watch through the routines they performed and Brad always did his best to participate. I did see him occasionally complain, but it was only to say things such as, " Mom, let me do it myself!" It just showed me that he always wanted help himself.

In August 2000, I immediately wanted to help when I found out that they were having Boy Scouts and their families be what they called "Brad's Angels" in the Muscular Dystrophy Telethon, I wanted to be one of the people to help. We raised lots of money that day for kids just like Bradley. I hope Bradley's up in heaven right now smiling and telling those he loved it's all okay. We'll all see you soon!

Kelly Connelly

Mt. Prospect, IL

I only knew Brad for 2 years. I did projects and work with him and Mr. Crail. He was a great person and a great friend. He was funny and a joy to be with. It's a tragedy that he is gone. He will be missed forever.

Steve Kregel

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad will be in our prayers and in our thoughts.

The Maglieri Family

Mt. Prospect, IL

Bradley's Uncle Mike and I (Aunt Carol) wish to incorporate "Bradley Our Hero", which I composed and read at his Funeral, into this memorial:

"Today we celebrate Brad's life. Not mourn his passing. The outpouring of love and compassion present these past few days celebrates his memory. Quiet, shy, yet polite to strangers, Brad was totally the opposite with those that knew and loved him. A humorous, fun-loving boy -- and who could forget that cynical smile!!!

All the pain and suffering he endured, we rarely heard him complain. Brad neither wanted, needed, nor accepted pity! Rather, he sought love, compassion, acceptance and friendship. He surrounded himself amongst people possessing these valued qualities.

Despite life's daily challenges, Brad always had the desire to travel and experience different things. Blessed with a family both willing and able to provide him the best childhood upbringing possible, Brad was extremely appreciative to live life to the fullest. He looked forward to MDA's annual Summer Camp, both handicap baseball and bowling...most important, Boy Scouts.

Quoting a few lyrics from the current BonJovi single:

'It's my life. It's now or never.

I ain't gonna live forever,

I just wanna live while I'm alive.

It's my life.'

One of Brad's favorite pop hits. How APROPOS!!!

Filled with positive energy - extremely bright; excelled in math; consistently an A+ honor roll student. He possessed a love for the "arts" - be it music, movies, plays or theatre. Brad sang in the school choir. Being quite artistic, he planned to be an Architect.

Most memorable heartfelt moment was being fortunate to attend a class ceremony wherein Brad was presented the All Around Best Kid Award. To be voted by both faculty and peers, quite a Tribute! One which Brad so richly deserved.

We feel blessed to have been fortunate enough to share our lives with someone so very special. Feeling a sense of emptiness, Brad leaves us brokenhearted -yet- we take comfort in our fondest memories, believing Brad won't be far, his spirit-forever with us.

Our Hero will continue to live on in our hearts!!"

Aunt Carol & Uncle Mike

Chicago, IL

I have been a big fan of Bradley ever since he was in my fourth grade class four years ago. He had a positive influence on all of the children in the class. Because of his determination and "can do" attitude, other children adopted the same determination. In addition, he helped everyone learn tolerance and how to appreciate differences in one another. When it was too cold for Brad to play outside at lunch recess, many wanted to stay in and play a game inside with him. We finally had to develop a schedule for each day because there were so many who wanted to be with Brad! He was a regular kid who just had to do things differently to compensate for his disability.

I am fortunate to have Brad's brother Chris in my class this year. I admire Chris for being a loving and caring brother to Bradley throughout all of their years together. He was devoted to Brad as Brad was devoted to him. They were quite a team!

Sandra Werner,

4th grade teacher at Lions Park School

I've known Brad for 5 years. We both had Ms. Henneberry for 3rd grade and that's when we met. I would stay in during lunch in the winter with Brad and Mrs. Boundy. We would go into the library and play games. During the summer, Megan and I would push Brad around in his wheel chair and we would talk. As the years went on, Brad and I didn't talk as much. But we would always say hi to each other.

Brad was surely that bravest and strongest young man I've ever met. I never saw Brad give up on anything nor did I ever hear him complain about anything.

Brad's death was tragic, but now he is in a better place. Now Brad can run, play ball, and ride a bike again. My prayers and thoughts go out to the Silchuck Family. I MISS YOU, BRAD, AND I WILL NEVER FORGET YOU.

Debra Cromie

Mt. Prospect, IL


You're an inspiration to us all! We're proud to be a part of your scouting family. You're an angel in our hearts forever.

The Rosel Family, Pack 154

Mt. Prospect, IL

To Brad's parents,

I never met Brad, but I heard a lot about him. He must have been someone very special because he touched so many lives.

One in particular was Mr. Heuser, that he never stopped talking about what an inspiration to everone that Brad was. Bob Heuser is my best friend and often told me about Brad. I think all that knew him were better for it.

The Farrell Family

McHenry, IL

We will miss you, Brad.


Mt. Prospect, IL

We are thankful for knowing Brad, a brave boy, whose courage will remain an inspiration to us.

We hold Brad in our hearts.

Lynn Atkinson & Ellie Kramer,

Lincoln Secretaries

Bradley Silchuck is my nephew. He is truly the bravest boy I have ever met in my life. I admired his strength and courage in accepting the life he was given. I never heard Brad complain and never saw him give up on anything. He lived a very full life and didn't allow his illness to hold him back from the things in life that were most important to him. He is truly an inspiration to me. I will miss you so much, Brad.

Matt, Gail and Chris: Thank you for giving Brad the best life ever. May God watch over you during these difficult days and may He strengthen us all with our very fond memories of Brad.

God bless you and keep you!

Love, Auntie Debbie

Itasca, IL

My cousin, Brad, is the bravest person I have ever been privileged to know. Just being around him gave me courage to make it through all of the tough times in my life. He helped me realize that no matter how bad things seemed for me, there was always someone with equal or worse problems. He just seemed so laid back, he took in all of his hardships with such ease. He never complained which showed just how brave he really is.

I will never forget you or your bravery, Brad. Its not a "good bye", but more of a "see ya later".

Your Cousin,

Eric Thude

Itasca, IL

Brad had a smile on his face. If everyone could be more like him, the world would be a better place. He is the BRAVEST BOY I KNOW, and will be forever. I love him and I miss him, but I know his life is better and happier now with God.

Your cousin,


Itasca, IL

On behalf of the Scout families of Pack 154, I want to express our thanks to Bradley for his many contributions to our Cub Scout Pack. He truly lived up to the ideal of "Do Your Best". He was a great inspiration to his fellow Scouts and their families. We also want Matt, Gail and Chris to know that you are in our thoughts and prayers at this difficult time.

Mike Giblin, Cubmaster

Cub Scout Pack 154

We are friends of Rita and Irv and are very sorry for their loss of a grandchild and for the entire family's loss. After reading the many condolences on this web site, it only confirms that Bradley was greatly loved and was not only a wonderful and caring person, but was surrounded by wonderful and caring family and friends throughout his life.

We hope that through the years, Bradley's family will come together for strength and find it through their memories of him and his strength. May God continue to be with your entire family, now and always.

Steve and Pat Dischler

Prairie du Sac, WI

I had the great fortune of teaching Brad in 6th grade. I was always impressed by his intelligence, quiet fortitude, and positive attitude. He once wrote a wonderful journal entry that told of his favorite hero. Brad explained that his brother, Chris, was his hero because of Chris's willingness to help.

There aren't too many kids with the level of maturity that Brad displayed day in and day out. Our family remembers him selling popcorn for his Troop and the pride he took in being part of a group like the Boy Scouts. Our hearts go out to the Silchuck family. Although Brad is in a wonderful place, we will miss the way he graced our lives in the classroom, the neighborhood, and the community.

The Craven family

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad's grandparents, Irv and Rita, have been business and personal friends for over 30 years. On the rare occasions that we have gotten together, they have talked lovingly about Brad and how he has handled his physical problems.

Scouting is a part of our family, one son Life and one an Eagle. It is amazing how much Brad accomplished. In the eyes of the Lord he is an Eagle. Our thoughts and prayers are with all the members of the Silchuck Family.

Fran and Bob Gunther

Haddonfield, NJ

I have known Brad for seven years and I know that I will never forget him. He was loved and accepted by everyone who knew him. He had a heart of gold and would make anyone smile. I know that Brad is in a better place now. He is running in heaven and watching our every moves. We should all be proud of the strong battle he fought, the improvements that he has made on our lives, and the inspiring life that he has lived.

With love and hope,

Meghan Kennedy

Mt. Prospect, IL

We really didn't know Brad because of the grade/age difference. But we always saw him at Lions Park and Lincoln, It's sad to see such a loving boy move on at such a young age. It was nice to see his nice smile everyday, both in chorus and in the hallways. We just want to let you know that our sympathy and loving thoughts are with you always. May your family be blessed. We know how it feels to lose someone you love so much.

Peace and love always,


The Rombalski and Chec families

Mt. Prospect, IL

Dear Silchucks,

I am sorry for your loss. I didn't know Brad personally, but I understand he was a great person.

Kevin Halloran

Mt. Prospect, IL

Despite the fact that I never got to know Brad, he seemed like a very courageous young man. Whenever I went to chorus on Wednesday mornings, he would always be in his spot, on time, ready to go. Brad would never miss a rehearsal.

I would always see Brad going through the halls on his wheelchair. I felt so much sympathy towards him.

Brad would always participate in whatever he could accomplish, even if it was difficult for him. He tried his best, and lived his life to the fullest. He has inspired me to do the same. Each day, you have to get up and think that this day could be your last.

I would also like to say that I am very proud of you, Brad, for inspiring me to do my best. And to the Silchuck family, through all the grief that you have suffered, I wish you happiness once again. You will be in my thoughts and prayers

Anna Nikiforak

Mt. Prospect, IL

I would just like to let you know that we are all thinking of Brad and your family. And I and the rest of the town that knew Brad, knew he was a good kid, who never gave up. It seemed like in school, he was always happy. He didn't let his disability affect the way he lived his life. It was a shame that he had to die at such a young age, but I know he's watching down on us now. I know he walked into Heaven's Gates, and I also know he's happy there.

Well, once again I'm sorry. We'll all miss Brad, and Chorus and class won't be the same without him. But know that when we're in class taking a test, or when were singing up on stage, we're thinking of him : )

Megan DeCaluwe

Mt. Prospect, IL

I knew Brad for 7 years. In those seven years whenever someone was around him, he would always bring out the best in that person. Brad was always a great kid to have around and a wonderful friend. He will be missed for all time.

Brien Barrett

Mt. Prospect, IL

I have been lucky to know Brad for over eight years. I was one of Brad's Cub Scout leaders for two years and one of his Boy Scout leaders for three years. Brad has always been a cheerful and dedicated scout. Even with his disability you would never hear Brad complain or ask for the easy way out.

I remember about six months ago, Brad had just earned the rank of First Class. Now for those who aren't familiar with Boy Scout advancement, a First Class scout is required to hold a position of responsibility in order to advance to the next level. At that time, in Troop 23, there were three positions open. Brad wanted to be a Troop Guide, which was the hardest of the three jobs, and usually filled by an older scout. Brad lobbied the Senior Patrol Leader and the Scoutmaster, and had to convince them he was ready for the job. He won the position and was sworn in shortly thereafter.

Then Brad would talk to the younger scouts in his patrol and determine what skills they needed to learn for their advancement. Brad, as a true leader, arranged special meetings before regular Troop meetings so he could teach these boys scout skills. Brad first reviewed the skills so he could recite them perfectly. Then he went on teaching the younger scouts, skills such as orienteering and first aid.

When it came time to teach the tying of knots, because he could not demonstrate with his hands, he would verbally explain the proper way to twist and turn the rope.

Brad was very proud when the youngest scouts he taught had learned enough skills to go for a board of review. When Brad got the news that they passed the board, you could see him smiling from ear to ear. Brad was doing something he liked.

Brad never asked for the easy way out! Brad completed his first term as Troop Guide and then asked to fill the position again. Brad was sworn in for his second term just fifteen days ago.

Jeff Nordhaus

Co Committee Chair Troop 23

To the Silchuck family-

I am very sorry to hear about the loss of Brad. I know how it feels to lose someone you love. Best wishes to all of you!


Chicago, IL

Bradley is my nephew. I will always remember his courage and strength in fighting his battle. I know when he was called to Heaven that he got up out of his chair and walked through the gates.

It's devastating to have lost him at such a young age, but it's comforting to know we have an angel named Bradley to call our own.

I love you kiddo and miss you already.

Love always and forever,

Auntie Terri

Terri Amendola

Chicago, Il.

Even though I didn't know Bradley. I know it must be a terrible loss for the family. He is in a wonderful place. He will be guarded forever. My best wishes to the family

A friend

I am very sorry about the loss of Brad. I know how it feels to lose someone you love dearly. Best wishes in the future!

Nikki Neumann

Chicago, IL

I remember the first day I met Brad. It was the first day of school in first grade. My teacher, Ms. Porter, told our class about how Brad was in a wheelchair. At that time, we didn't think anything of it. We didn't realize how hard his disability must have been for him and his family. I still remember going over to his house with Allison, and we went swimming. I had so much fun that day.

More recently, I got the opportunity to participate in three MDA Telethon-fundraisers. I had a lot of fun while helping out tons of kids with the same disability that Bradley had. Brad was such a nice kid, and no one will ever forget him. I got the privilege of doing a reading at his funeral, and after I saw how long the funeral procession was and how many people came to his funeral and wake, I knew in my heart that he deserved it all.

It is too bad that he died at such a young age, but I remember that he is in a better place now - doing all of the things he could never do before like riding a bike, running, walking, and lots of other things that other people get to do everyday.


Glenna Sullivan

Mt. Prospect, IL

I know how it feels to lose something near and dear to you. Just from all these heartfelt messages that were posted about Brad, I feel and know what a pleasant and nice young man he was. I give you my deepest sympathy and hope you know that I will be praying for your family.


I never really knew Brad. I was fortunate enough to have him in my White Pines group in 5th grade, and to have him in my chorus group for the 3 years I have been at Lincoln. When I heard that he had passed on, my heart sank, and I was so sad. I couldn't believe that such a young person, who was so nice and involved in so much, whom I had known since I moved to Mt. Prospect in 3rd grade, had actually died. When I went to the wake on Thursday, it was very hard to see a fellow student in a coffin. Even though I couldn't be at the funeral on Friday, my heart and prayers were with the Silchuck family and Brad. I know Brad will always watch over everyone that he loved and who loved him.


Samantha Calia

Mt. Prospect, IL

Bradley was a good scout, a good student, and a good friend. He was always happy and he never complained, no matter what happened. We had a lot of fun in scouting, like the times we went to Camp Napowan and Camp Lakota. Also working together on our Pinewood Derby cars was fun.

Through all the years I have known him, Bradley tried his hardest. If he failed at doing something he would try again; he never gave up. Everyone who knew him will miss him.

Dan Nordhaus

Troop 23

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad is gone. He is in the heavens playing ball.

Billy Brandeis

Mt. Prospect, IL

Although I carry deep regret of not getting to know Bradley better, just being in a few classes with him allowed me to learn that he was such a great kid.

Brad's death has brought me and the rest of school great sadness. There is such a horrible, empty space without him there.

Yet, he also helped me realize exactly how unappreciative I am and how strong a person he must have been. He can teach us so much about ourselves, and how we shouldn't take anything, not walking, not breathing, not even waking up for granted. I could never be as strong as he.

It is tragic that his life was as short as it was, but I believe Brad lived his life to beyond the fullest.

My heart and prayers are with the Silchucks always. May God be with you and help you get through this horrible loss.

Bradley will be missed forever.

Maggie Meyers

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was an interesting person that was involved in many activities. He should remembered for all his hard struggles and amazing talents that were remarkable for an 8th grader. He had the misfortune of passing away at such a young age. We will always miss him and remember him in our hearts and thoughts. We hope you will smile upon us with each passing day.

Mrs. Michalik's Class 8th Period

Mt. Prospect, IL

Everyone in the entire class will never forget Brad EVER. He was a very nice kid and special to everyone at Lincoln. We will miss him dearly. Brad will always be in our hearts for ever and ever. Brad was a great kid and he always tried in school and never gave up. He loved Boy Scouts and he always wanted to be a great leader. We will never forget Brad for being such a good person. Goodbye, we will miss you!

Mrs. Michalik's 8th & 9th period class

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was a great kid! He was never mean to a kid or an adult. He always tried his hardest at everything he would do. Brad was a special kid and everyone who knew him will miss him a lot! I will miss him!!!!

Tommy Sarau

Mt. Prospect, IL

We will miss you very much, Brad. Look down on us.

Lincoln Jr. High School

Mt. Prospect, IL

I was Brad's friend. Brad was a nice boy. I will miss you, friend.

Joe Baumgartner

Mt. Prospect, IL

I have known Brad since the 1st grade. Through the years I have seen him grow into a fine young man. Brad had a heart of gold and a smile so pure. Every time I saw him smile, it always put a smile on my face, even if I was having a really bad day. The day I found out Brad had passed away, I was so deeply upset that I didn't know what to do. My sympathy will always be with the Silchuck family. Brad was a fine man and will always be in our hearts and will never be forgotten. From me and all the kids at Lincoln Jr. High, WE WILL MISS YOU BRAD !!!!!

With Love,

Nicole Armgardt

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was the bravest scout I've had the honor to know. The only time I heard him complain it was a normal teenager's "oh, Dad" complaint. I never heard a "why me?" complaint. I hope you're finally comfortable now, Brad. We'll miss you.

Mr. Weiss

Troop 23

Mount Prospect American Legion Post expresses its deepfelt sympathy to the Silchuck family. You and Troop 23 can be very proud of this courageous young man. The memory of him will last.

Eric Ellesson


American Legion Post 525

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was very kind and loving. He was a great person. It was a privilege to go to school with him. Brad is now in a much better place, Heaven. I miss you Brad. I will never forget you.

John Anagnos

Mt. Prospect, IL

We are very blessed to have had Brad in our lives. He was an inspiration to all who crossed his path and a great role model for living life to the fullest !!!

He will always be in our hearts. :)

Tony and Denise Moore

Chicago, IL

I never really knew Brad, but I heard good things about him and I will miss him.

Kevin O'Neill

Mt. Prospect, IL

I am very sorry for the loss of Brad. He was a dear friend to everyone. He made everyone feel good inside and he made everyone smile. He tried hard in everything he did whether it was chorus or Boy Scouts. Every time I saw him, I would hope to see him through high school and I hoped for him to live as long as possible.

He deserved to be on the plaque in Lions Park in fifth grade. He tried hard and it paid off. He is now in a better place and he will never forget anyone in his family. He will watch over you and care for you, and you will meet up with him someday. I just really want to say Best Wishes and I hope everyone and everything is good to you.

Danielle Galladora

Mt. Prospect, IL

I can't believe Brad passed on. It was just yesterday that I can remember seeing him going to school in the morning, always with a smile on his face. Despite not knowing him personally, seeing him everyday around school always made me feel good inside. I'm so sorry for your loss. I know it must be hard for you and your family, but I know he is in Heaven, still with a smile on his face.

Carrie Pope

Mt. Prospect, IL

I didn't know Brad all that well, but he was a very nice guy. I will always remember him by the sound of his wheelchair. I always knew the class period was almost over when I heard Brad and Mr. Crail walk past the room. I feel really bad and am crying as I write this. Even though I can't make it to the wake or funeral, I wish I could.

Brad will be watching over all his loved ones now from the heavens above. My deepest sympathies to the Silchuck Family.

Chrissy Marie Martens

Mt. Prospect, IL

I think that Brad was a friend to us all. For the 3 years that I knew him, he was the kindest person that anybody could have as a friend. We had a lot of fun times together like at my birthday party and his birthday party last year and at the baseball games. Everyone will miss him!

Erik Zielinski

Troop 23

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad will always be in our hearts and mind. I always thought of him as a brave kid who fought his way through life. He made the best of situations and, as for what I knew of him, he was a smart person who participated in class and always livened up our classes' lives. We'll always miss him and keep him in our prayers.

My sympathy-

Katie Web

Bradley, I am very sorry for your loss. You aren't alone.


Arlington Heights, IL

I knew Brad for 3 years. He was a good friend of mine, he was with me in math class and the lunch group. I used to help him whenever he asked me. Brad was such a nice person and I always listened to him. Brad, you are always in my memories and I miss you a lot.

Bijoy Thomas

Mt. Prospect, IL

I didn't know Brad very well, but he was a great kid to go through this. Brad, Lincoln will ever be the same without your smile!! We all will miss you!! Now I know I can be strong because of Brad. Thanks, I will miss you.


We do and always have loved you, Brad. Watch over us forever and ever. We miss you. We will remember you.


Mt. Prospect, IL

I am very sorry for Brad's loss. He was a nice kid and a great lab partner too. He will always be remembered and will be looking down at us from heaven.

Goodbye, Brad, we'll all miss you!!!!

Tony Prandini

Mt. Prospect, IL

We are so sorry for your loss, and we can't explain in words how we feel. Brad always had many friends, no matter where he was. We personally didn't know Brad, but we always saw him around. He was always so kind and comforting to others. He was the bravest boy we know and everyone loves him. I am sure that speaks for the whole school.

We love you, Brad, and we always will!!!!

The Sulkowski Family

Mt. Prospect, IL

We knew, loved, and admired Brad.

To know Brad was to know strength. In the face of his declining muscle power, he had the great mental strength to accept his condition, yet never surrender his joy for life. Despite his struggles, he never quit living. He always wanted to participate as fully as he could in the activities of life. If it were humanly possible to cause a motorized wheelchair to make a hook slide into second base, Brad would have done it!

To know Brad was to know courage. None of us can appreciate how difficult it was for him to do those things we all take for granted. Everyday tasks, including the simple act of breathing, were hard for him. Special activities, such as camping, were monumental undertakings. He never quit trying to do these things, though frustrations and obstacles were around every corner.

To know Brad was to know grace. Life is not easy for a teenager, much less one who is "different". But Brad was different in the best possible way. He treasured every joy he knew in life. He harbored no ill will to those who did not try to understand or help. Although constantly surrounded by those of us who often fail to properly appreciate our lives, he never, ever complained about his own. His unfailing grace has surely placed him in the arms of our Lord.

Knowing Brad made us all better people. His departure too soon from our midst should serve as a constant reminder to always say the kind word and to do the good deed while we have the chance. Let that be his legacy to us.

Bates and Marianne Noble

Troop 23

Dear Silchuck Family,

Our thoughts are with you. I'm sure Brad is up in Heaven telling everyone how wonderful you all were to him on earth. Your love for him came through his smile and his strength to fight his courageous battle. Brad has been such a great part of your family. He has touched so many peoples' lives and has changed the way people look at their problems.

May God show you strength in the days to follow and may you find peace in your hearts knowing how much you are loved.


Mike, Margie, Corey & Patrick Halpin

Old Friends from St. Thecla

On behalf of Mt. Prospect American Legion Post 525, we extend our deepest sympathy to the Silchuck family in the loss of their dear son, Bradley. Our Post is very proud of the accomplishments of the Boy Scouts of Troop 23. We salute Bradley for his courage, determination and accomplishments that he has achieved in Scouting.

The American Legion Post is proud of Bradley and he will be remembered in our prayers.

Lee Jensen,

Past Commander

American Legion Post 525

I want to say I am very sorry about the loss. I didn't know Brad but, whenever I saw him in the halls, he put a smile on my face every time I saw him. We all hate to see a young boy's life to be taken. I hope the Silchucks can find peace with this loss.

You're not alone!

Melissa Venit

Mt. Prospect, IL

I go to Lincoln Jr. High. I'm in 7th grade. I am really sorry for your loss. I didn't personally know Brad, but I have seen him in hall. I can't tell you in words how bad I feel for your family.

Nicole Bonis

Mt. Prospect, IL

I am very disappointed about what happened to Brad. I didn't really know him that well. I usually would seen him in the hallways and around chorus going by. I wish this had never happened to someone this young. Brad was a very kind kid. He was always good at school work. He did his best to keep up and be on class on time. We will all miss Brad. We all loved him a lot.

Jaime R. Rutkowski's family

Mt. Prospect, IL

I didn't know Bradley but, I've heard a lot of stories from Chris and other people. I think he was a good kid, and I feel very sorry for the Silchuck's loss.

Liz Rivera

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad put a smile on my face every time I saw him in the hallway. I hardly knew him, but the thought of him gone is very hard for everyone. I'm sure that Brad is in a better place now. He will always be looking down on us and we will always be looking up to him. Brad Silchuck is a great person, and I will always remember him.

Laura Hubert

Mt. Prospect, IL

I am very sorry about this loss. I remember when I was babysitting one time for the Maghee's, and Brad and Chris were there. We were fighting the darkness to try and build the ultimate fort out of jump ropes and about 5 old sheets. We had only 2 trees to tie the ropes to, and eventually we gave up but the fun didn't end. We put Chris in the swing, tied a few ropes to the swing, and had Brad pull the rope, then let go. Brad has as good a time as Chris.

I knew Brad through block parties and my brother's Cub Scouts. I know the loss of his life is horrible. I will always remember Brad as a fun-loving and great kid. He lived each day with the joy of every simple thing. I will never forget him.

Annie Raeder

Mt. Prospect, IL

I never actually knew Brad, but he seemed pretty cool. But my parents knew him. My father owns Artemis Restaurant, and Brad always came there every Sunday after church. Also, we did the donation offering for MDA. Many, many people always bought the donation cards. I'm so glad that the raised money helped many children like him. It's so sad that he passed away. I didn't even know him and I cried my eyes out all day. May God always be with him.

Love always,

Maria Sakkos

It's true I didn't know all that much about Brad. I never knew his favorite color and favorite food, but I do know two things. They are that he was one wonderful kid and I also know that I, as well as the entire school and community will miss him.

I think sometimes we don't take out time of our day to learn more about other people. None of us expected Brad to pass on so early. If we would've known, I think many of us would have definitely taken the time to get to know him better. I wish now, that I, personally had taken the time to get to know his favorite food, or maybe even his favorite color. We will all remember him and he will be greatly missed.

Jody Blondell

Mt. Prospect, IL

I just thought that I would say that even though I didn't really know Brad that well, I am very sorry for this loss. I'm sure he was a great kid. When he was in fifth grade, I was in fourth and I remember that he used to collect all the planet lunch ship bags to earn planet lunch points. Everyone would give him their planet lunch bags and by the time lunch ended he would have a giant stack of them in front of him.

I will always remember Brad. His family and friends will be in my thoughts and prayers.



Mt. Prospect, IL

I went to the same school as Brad, and I was actually kind of surprised to hear that he had passed away. One day I saw him going through the halls, the next I learned that he had died. We weren't in the same grade, so I didn't know him as well as I should have, but whenever I did see him, he was smiling.

It makes me wonder about how someone my own age could just leave us like that, because you think everyone's healthy. I guess I was wrong. Brad should have been able to graduate from high school, or at least Lincoln. Now that he can't, that's not really fair.

I hope something can be done for other people with this disease so no one else has to feel the loss of everyone in his family, troop, school, church, and life.

Miriam Petersen

Mt. Prospect, IL

We didn't know Bradley personally but we sure felt like we knew him through the conversations of him with his proud grandparents, Irv & Rita Silchuck. During visits with Irv & Rita, they would fill us in on how Bradley was doing and what a great attitude he has and never once complained about his life's struggle.

Oh, how we all can learn from Bradley! We feel very privileged having known Bradley through his inspiring stories.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Silchuck family, especially during this difficult time.

Love, Cindi & Debbie;

Durward's Glen

Baraboo, Wi

I knew Brad for 3 years, and he was a great guy. He was in my English and Reading classes. I said hi to him a lot, but I just wish I could have known him better. Brad is in a better place, so he feels better and that is what everybody wants for him.


Mt. Prospect, IL

I only knew Brad for 2 years. He was a really nice guy. It made me really happy when he smiled. I will miss him a lot and I'm sure all of the 8th grade will too.

Luke Pawelczyk

Mt. Prospect, IL

Even though we didn't know Brad that well, we know that he had a good heart and would never do anything to hurt people even if they hurt him. We knew he was sick but never expected him to pass away so soon. It is really sad that he died at such a young age. We give our regards to the Silchuck Family...and hope that you pull through this tragedy.


Silke Molina, Lindsey Scully and all of Lincoln Jr. High

Mt. Prospect, IL

I didn't know Brad very well, but I knew he was a nice kid. Lots of people will miss him.

Daniel Johnathan Moone

Mt. Prospect, IL

It is very sad that Brad passed away. He was a great person.

The Hallers

Mt. Prospect, IL

I'm very sorry that Brad passed away, but we will always remember him in our hearts and thoughts. We'll all miss you, Brad.

Chris Hauerrberg

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was a very nice kid, and he always had a friend. God bless him!

Nicole Sulkowski

Mt. Prospect, IL

I remember Brad as far back as kindergarten at St. Raymond's. I remember at graduation for kindergarten, Amy B. and I talked to him to ease the excitement of graduating. I was right next to him when we sang on the steps of the church. Amy took Bradley by the hand and walked down the aisle of the church. I will always remember him with a great heart.


Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was in my math class this year and we always had one class together. Brad was cool in his own ways and he never hated anybody. I admire that he lived a good life and now he is in a better place.

Andy Elatkin

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was always a great friend. I didn't know him very well but the time I was with him was great. I have only known Brad for 3 years, but in those 3 years I got to know one of the most caring people. Brad was a friend to many and helped as many as he could. His help in others' lives affected them. I'm proud to say that I was a friend of Brad. I am sincerely sorry for this tragic loss.

Justin T. Rock

Mt. Prospect, IL

I'm sorry about Brad. We really didn't know Brad that much, but he was a great guy. Our thoughts and love go to your family.

The Szelliga Family

Mt. Prospect,IL

We are very fortunate to have known him. He touched our lives every single Thursday when we saw him. I (Chris) even saw him in school almost every day. He always brought a smile to everyone's face, and I never ever heard him complain. I hope the Telethon will help others with the same problem. We will never forget him. And our best with to the Silchuck's.

~The Quinlans

Mt. Prospect, IL

I am very sorry for your loss

Jeff Owen

Mt. Prospect, IL

To the Silchuck Family:

I'm very sorry about what happened to Bradley. He was a very good kid. I didn't know him well, because of the grade difference and I wasn't in band or chorus. But if I got to know him better, I know he must have been a really good kid. My family and I are very sorry.

The France Family

Mt. Prospect, IL

I am very sorry for your terrible loss. It must be a very hard time for you. I never actually met Brad, but I saw him all the time. Sometimes I saw him going through my neighborhood during the summer. It really caught me by surprise that he died. It was very sad that he died.

Evan Prellberg

Mt. Prospect, IL

Though we didn't know him very well, we knew he was a great person. We are very sorry about the loss. We will keep him in our thoughts and prayers.

Love always,

Melissa B, Christine S & Emily H

Mt. Prospect, IL

I knew Bradley only three years. But, in those three years, he showed me such determination and strength that is hard to imagine in a child of his years.

I was the fortunate one to have known him. He will be sorely missed in our household.

Sandra Danzig-Negrillo

Mt. Prospect, IL

Our deepest sympathies go out to the Silchuck family.

If there's ever anything we can do to help, please don't hesitate to ask.

The Nelson Family

Mt. Prospect, IL

Too often we find ourselves unhappy with our lot in life. We complain about our job or school or any of the other trivial annoyances that populate our daily lives. We should look to Brad Silchuck and put our lives into perspective. The courage and strength Brad showed virtually every day and in the Scouting program were nothing short of heroic.

I never once heard him complain about anything.

I consider myself fortunate to have known Brad; he was a genuinely good Scout and will be sorely missed. I take inspiration from Brad's example.

Porter Noble

West Point, NY

I have known Bradley for over seven years. In our seven year friendship, he has taught me many different things about life. We always listened to each other and always wanted to be by each other 24-7. To me that is wonderful!!

During these years I have come to know the whole Silchuck family. They all are wonderful people with hearts as good as gold. They have been so nice and generous to me. The Silchuck family has always celebrated my birthday and never forgotten.

Though the years Brad's condition became worse but that didn't stop us from having a great time together.

But when we came into Junior High everything changed, and we didn't see each other 24-7 anymore. We only saw each other in school or when our families met. But once a year, we went to the MDA telethon! That's when we caught up on news and stuff.

I think as a kid the best decision I made was becoming Brad's best friend. We both benefitted from it. And I know for a fact that Brad is up in Heaven right now just running around!!

I will always love Brad.



Allison Luft

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was my and my wife's Trucker Buddy. We knew him a short time but love him very much. We know he will be missed, but never forgotten.

Tom Mackey

New Albany, IN

I only knew Brad for 3 years, but in that time I found that he didn't hate anyone.

Jared Anderson

Troop 23

Mt. Prospect, IL

Bradley was our Grandson and will be missed immensely. He is to be admired for his quiet acceptance of his condition without any complaint. His participation in activities during the early stages of his disease showed a tremendous competitiveness and will to overcome the fact that he had muscle deficiency.

He remains our inspiration and hope for that future meeting in God's Kingdom. We know he is an Angel already, passing thru the ranks quicker than anyone else. WHAT A GREAT CHILD!!!!

Irvin & Rita Silchuck

"Papa" and "Busha"

Itasca, IL

Brad touched our lives and our hearts in many ways. He was a very courageous boy who loved life. He will always live in our hearts forever. We are very fortunate to have known him.

The Tzioumis Family

Mt. Prospect, IL

The Zimmermann family is saddened at the news of Bradley's passing and extends our deepest condolences and prayers to the Silchuck family.

Bradley was a very wonderful addition to our Troop, and served as an inspiration to us all.

We truly believe that Brad, now free of his infirmity, is walking and running in Heaven.

The Zimmermann Family

Mt. Prospect, IL

Brad was a son a parent could be very proud of. I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to know Bradley. We will not forget him.

Jean Nordhaus

Mt. Prospect, IL