Friday, October 7, 2022

Live Strive Benefit Celebrates the Memory of Justin Haynes

Justin Haynes and Eric Nix

Four years ago Justin Haynes and his friend Eric Nix snapped an unforgettable photo that was later celebrated by Rebel Nation around world.

An engagement photo of Kaitlyn Crosby with Justin Haynes
An engagement photo of Kaitlyn Crosby with Justin Haynes

It has been a few months since Justin Haynes, UM graduate, a veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and owner of Montgomery & Co. Pumping, LLC, passed away from a car accident this January. May 16 was the date set for his wedding to Kaitlyn Crosby.

“Instead of having that day just be a horrible reminder of what we had,” said Crosby, “we wanted to hold a benefit in his honor and to place special meaning on May 16 again.”

They were engaged for a year and shared a home together in Oxford. She knew him well.

“He had the tattoos ‘Live’ and ‘Strive’ on his sides,” said Crosby. “When we started discussing the benefit we decided on the Live Strive Memorial Benefit due to those tattoos and also based on how he lived life: always to the fullest.”

Hayne’s military career as a Corporal in the Marine Corps with a tour in Afghanistan makes Live Strive Memorial Benefit’s cause an easy decision: the Wounded Warrior project.

Justin Haynes with his family
Justin Haynes with his family

The benefit is open to public and will be at the Rafters on the Square next Saturday. Gutter Daisies and Charlie’s Bow Tie will be playing and there will be a silent auction from 6 to 8:30 p.m. featuring over 50 donated items.

Crosby said, “Rafters has been so great in helping us with the event and if anyone has not been yet, please go check it out!”

For those who are unable to attend there is a GoFundMe page.

“This event means a lot to me because it gives us the ability to raise money for a great cause in honor of an even greater person,” said Crosby. “Justin truly lived and while taken from us too soon, his memory lives on in everyone that knew him.”

She then said, “Philippians 4:13,” her fiance’s favorite Biblical phrase: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Callie Daniels is a staff reporter/writer at She can be reached at

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