CHESAPEAKE, Va (WVEC) -- Family and friends of Tony Longoria never thought a devastating accident during Hurricane Matthew would change their lives forever.

Longoria, who was known around Hampton Roads as "DJ Toeknee", was a role model for many, his friends said.

“You can't really describe him in one word," said Chris Heater, a close friend to Longoria. "He was that guy that if you met him, he changed your life instantly."

And it was in an instant that many close to Tony felt their lives completely change.

In early October, during Hurricane Matthew, Longoria was returning to Chesapeake from a gig in Virginia Beach. It was his 38th birthday.

Family members say he wanted to ride the storm out in a hotel, but staff turned him away because there was no electricity.

"I didn't expect it to be that bad," said Brooke Longoria, Tony’s wife. "Instead of trying to find another hotel, I guess he tried to come home to us."

Longoria crashed his car into a trailer on I-64 that was stopped because of a fallen tree.

"I don't know, I just feel lost," said Brooke.

The Marine veteran leaves behind three children, ages 15, 6, and 4.

"He was an amazing DJ, but above anything else, he was the best father,” Longoria said.

A benefit was held Sunday to help the family with house payments and funeral costs.

The family has set up a link for anyone looking to help.

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