When Kendrick Castillo used to hang around his dad’s homebrewing friends, he made quite an impression.
When one friend, who now owns Strange Craft Beer Company in Denver, learned of the 18-year-old’s death, he decided to make a beer in his honor.
“Kendrick was obviously an amazing young man,” owner Tim Myers said.
Sales of the beer, called “Kendrick’s Ale: Remember a Hero” benefited the robotics club that Kendrick was a member of.
Kendrick was killed during the May 7 STEM School Highlands Ranch shooting. He was fatally shot while rushing one of the two alleged gunmen. Eight other people were injured in the attack.
Myers got to know John and Maria Castillo in the early 2000s through a group of homebrewing friends.
“We all just randomly got together on occasional Saturdays and we’d taste what we’d brewed last time and make new beers,” he said.
Myer’s son and Kendrick used to play together, he said.
“We’re trying to remember an amazing young man and try to turn an unfortunate, horrible negative into something positive,” he said. “And hopefully help the healing process for John and Maria.”
The brewery hosted an event and candlelight vigil to sell the beer Nov. 15.
“That was amazing,” Myers said. “It was nonstop from when we opened at noon until things calmed down at 10…A lot of people came to support Kendrick and his parents.”
During the vigil, John Castillo and others shared memories of Kendrick, he said.
The hefeweizen, wheat-style beer was made with orange peel and Colorado honey, to make it bittersweet, Myers said.
“Because we’re remembering an amazing young man,” he said. “But (we’re) also remembering a tragedy.”
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