Kim Byriel, 43, of Mountain Top, passed away Monday afternoon at Hospice Community Care at Geisinger South Wilkes-Barre, surrounded by his loving wife and close friends after a courageous two-year battle with brain cancer.
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Kim was born on Oct. 23, 1969, in Odense, Denmark, the only son of Per Byriel and the late Elisabeth Byriel. Kim lost his mother when he was only 16 years old.
After finishing school in Kopenhagen, Denmark, Kim studied economics and business administration, focusing on international marketing and management in Denmark, England and Australia. He then moved to Germany, where he met his wife, Julia.
After his first son, Niklas, was born, Kim had the opportunity to relocate to South Windsor, Conn., with his family, where his second son, Philip, was born. To further his career, he then moved with his family to Wilmington, N.C., for three years before he switched jobs one more time and moved to Mountain Top and started to work as the vice president international for Intermetro Industries, Wilkes-Barre.
Kim was the most loving and devoted husband, father and friend, always putting himself last. He loved to travel and took every opportunity to introduce new places to Julia and his boys. He loved to play basketball, and even made it to the U-17 national team in Denmark.
He had a passion for photography, which he had planned to pursue after he was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, a dangerous form of brain cancer, two years ago. He never questioned why, but handled this difficult situation with grace. He touched many hearts with his positive attitude.
Kim was not able to work for the past two years, but enjoyed life, went to the gym regularly, started yoga and co-coached his sons' basketball team. He was able to spend a lot of quality time with his family and was also a great inspiration for many patients with the same diagnosis through his wit and humor.
Surviving are his wife, Julia, to whom he would have been married 13 years in August; his two sons, Niklas and Philip; his father, Per Byriel; his uncle, Mogens Jacobsen, and his wife, Mette Salamonsen; his maternal grandmother, Lis Christensen; his paternal grandmother, Anna Margarete Jacobsen; great aunt and uncle, Dora and Viggo Jensen; and several cousins, all in Denmark.
Julia and family express their sincere gratitude to Dr. Lacroix at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, as well as Dr. Turner at Geisinger, Danville; Michelle Wilkus and Angela Whitmire, both RNs at Geisinger, as well as Penny Kaiser, Novocure representative; the nurses at both PCU at Geisinger and at Hospice Community Care, Wilkes-Barre.
A joyful celebration of Kim's life will be held between 4 and 8 p.m. Saturday at King's Pizzeria in Mountain Top.
In lieu of flowers, donations will be accepted. A portion of the donations will benefit the family of Eric Speicher, who is also battling brain cancer.
Published in Times Leader on July 24, 2013