Brad Skafte (left) and Adam Patnode
HANOVER, Minn. - Paging through the past of an old yearbook, Nathan Bigley came to the sad realization Sunday his two good friends no longer have a future.
"Just a scary accident," Bigley told KARE 11. "It's hard to take in. It still really hasn't hit me hard. But they were both really good guys. Everyone loved them in the community."
Good buddies and former Rockford High School students Brad Skafte and Adam Patnode died after the snowmobile they were riding went through the ice on Lake Charlotte Saturday night.
After searching until the early morning hours, officials discovered their bodies Sunday afternoon.
"Both the kids were over at our house Friday night," said Dan Harberts while standing next to his wife Sue.
The Harberts', whose son was good friends with both Skafte and Patnode, joined a large group of friends and their parents at Rockford High School Sunday afternoon to pray and remember.
"They always seemed to be bored; they wanted to have something to do. Sitting around was never good enough for them," he said. "They're way too young for something like this to happen."
Friends say both were popular kids in high school with Skafte graduating in 2009 and Patnode in 2010.
Skafte played basketball and football and Patnode wrestled. Friends add that both loved to laugh and joke around.
"It's a tragedy and a real loss for our school community. It's an extended family here," said Ryan Jensen, principal at Rockford High School.
Jensen says grief counselors will be on hand at the high school when classes resume Tuesday.
"You hear these things happen and it's somewhere else and someone else, and all of sudden when it's two kids you know very well and it's in your own community it has an impact on everyone," said Sue Harberts.
It was too difficult for family members to talk on camera, but the Patnode family told KARE 11 off camera that the community support has meant a lot.
Sunday marks the first day of Snowmobile Awareness Week in Minnesota.
(Copyright 2012 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)