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"He was always trying to sprint to the finish line," Hundreds pay respects to Andrew Klein

Posted at 5:40 PM, Mar 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-14 07:40:23-04

PIKESVILLE, Md. (WMAR) — Andrew Klein was 'always trying to sprint to the finish line.'

That's how the executive's younger brother, Michael, remembered his brother during remarks for Andy's funeral.

A crowded Sol Levinson's Funeral Home came to pay their respects to Klein who died Monday in a 12-car pileup on Route 24 in Harford County.

RELATED: Victims of deadly Route 24 crash in Harford County remembered

"Andy was just a puppy when he starting out under his mom and dad, but he came a long way and really built the business," Bill Griffiths said.

His company does refrigeration for the Klein Family Markets. The two worked together for more than 30 years, and over time grew incredibly close.

"He had a great personality. One time, I visited him in his office on a sales call. And he got up and started singing and dancing to 'Achy, Breaky Heart' by Billy Ray Cyrus. He loved that song. He would sing and dance -- it was just that personality. He didn't always let that show to different people, but every now and then he let loose with those kinds of things," Griffiths said.

Klein and 7-year-old Tripp Johnson died in that crash.

RELATED:Two killed, including 7-year-old boy, six others injured in Bel Air crash

In the days since, a shocked community has leaned on one another to cope and remember just how impactful Klein was to their lives.

"We got to attend the Holocaust Museum as a result of Mr. Klein's generous gift to The John Carroll School and I understand that my class may have been the first to participate in that and it was a really profound experience," Joe Peterson, a classmate of Klein's son Marshall, said.

Serious about his giving, serious about his faith, and serious about his family -- those who knew 'Andy' best says he was a man of principal, passion, and pride and one who will sorely be missed.

"I do remember a joyful smile and just a very pleasant and wonderful human being," Peterson said.