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Canadian disc golfer's memory carried on through traveling frisbee now in Western New York

On September 16, 2021, 45-year-old Nelson was killed in a horrific car crash. His sister and friend wanted to find a way to carry on his memory.

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — From the time a story begins, you need the right guide. 

But in this one, Adam Jacobs of Lackawanna didn't even know it was him. 

 "I didn't know the story whatsoever," Jacobs said. 

About a week ago, he and a friend were playing disc golf at Firemen's Park in Niagara Falls, Ontario. 

"Hadn't been to Canada in awhile, let alone play in any parks there," Jacobs said. 

As fate would have it, something special was waiting for him on the course.

"You walk close to basket 16 and we thought we saw a disc," Jacobs said. 

He found an orange disc in memory of 45-year-old Nelson Kelly with one request: to play with it and pass it on. 

"I was like I'm playing at Chestnut Ridge tomorrow. It would be kind of cool because we have so many courses in the Buffalo area," Jacobs said. 

Jacobs brought it to Orchard Park, shared what he found on social media, and quickly garnered more than 250,000 reactions. 

One of them was from Nelson Kelly's older sister Natalie Kelly.

"All of this has taken off like wildfire. I never would've imagined in a million years. But kindness, it helps. It helps make my heart smile in the tough times," Natalie Kelly said. 

On September 16, 2021, Nelson Kelly died in a horrific car crash. 

Nelson Kelly left behind an entire family, including a wife, a then 3-year-old son, and his best friend. 

"I can't even describe it, the hole, the loss. The world seems different. It gives you a different perspective," Natalie Kelly said. 

On the one-year anniversary of Nelson Kelly's death, Natalie Kelly and her friend Stewart Stick decided to honor his memory as an avid disc golfer with the disc Jacobs found.

They left it at a course in their hometown, never expecting it to make it more than three hours away and counting. 

"I just think when his little son grows older and gets to see all this, he'll get to look back at all this and see all the outpouring of love for his dad which he deserves," Natalie Kelly said. 

"To have a tragedy like that happen, it's just so sad and it makes me more appreciative and grateful that I was able to help move her story along like this," said Adam Jacobs. 

Jacobs may have not known he was a guide in this story. 

"I would love to see this actually go everywhere," Jacobs said. 

However, it's because of him and everyone who is next that Nelson's memory won't end.

Jacobs says at the last word, the disc is about halfway through the course at Lake Erie State Park in Fredonia. 

So keep passing it on if you see it. 

Natalie Kelly and Jacobs plan to play a round of disc golf together soon.

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