The sad turnaround of Jayden Mason's death
HOURS before he was left for dead on the side of the road, Jayden Mason told friends he was "winning" and "couldn't be happier" with life.
The Central Coast man was supposed to be starting a full-time job today as a labourer and was excited about the future.
"Just got a full-time job... Couldn't be happier #winning #timetomoveon," he wrote on Facebook on Saturday afternoon.
But just hours later the popular 21-year-old was dead. His devastated family switched off his life support after realising he would not recover from severe head injuries. He had been rushed to hospital late on Saturday after being found barely alive on the roadside at Wyong.
Earlier in the night he had been drinking and watching the football at the Wyong Leagues Club, where it's believed there was some sort of altercation. A critically injured Mr Mason was found a short time later a few hundred metres away.
His death is being treated as a homicide - but it remains a mystery what killed him.
There is speculation he was the victim of a hit-and-run, while another line of inquiry for homicide detectives is a fight broke out after Mr Mason got out of a ride-share and demanded his money back.
Police are also investigating whether his death was linked to the altercation at the leagues club.
One of his oldest friends, Josh Wright, told news.com.au that Mr Mason was "keen as" about his new job.
They hadn't seen each other for about three weeks, but Mr Mason had Snapchatted him on Saturday night from the Leagues Club.
He didn't go - and the next day was phoned by a mate with the shattering news that Mr Mason was clinging to life in hospital.
Mr Wright was able to visit his oldest friend in hospital and say goodbye before the family made the heartbreaking decision to switch off his life support.
"I went and saw him and gave him a hug and a last goodbye and gave his family a hug. They're not too good."
He was devastated to see his oldest friend in such a bad way and stunned this could happen to "such a good bloke".
"He never failed to put a smile on anyone's face when you were around him. He was always up for everything. In the surf he would charge the biggest waves when no one else would go out. He was so good to everyone, I don't know why anyone would do this to him."
Mr Wright had been told there had been an altercation at the leagues club and Mr Mason may have been kicked out. He wasn't sure if he'd gone there with anyone or just met up with people there.
But he was sure of one thing - he wouldn't have gone looking for trouble.
"It would be out of character. If he had to fight he would knuckle down, but he wouldn't have gone looking for it."
He would remember him most of all as being a top surfer and footy player who was "loved by family and friends".
Most of all though, he would remember him as being "fearless".
"He was scared of nothing. For this to happen to him is a shock to everyone."
Girlfriend Amber Newton told news.com.au she was "broken" by the loss of the "love of my life".
"I loved him with all my heart. He was absolutely everything to me. I'm so broken and devastated this has happened to him."
Acting Superintendent Dave Waddell said a post-mortem examination on Wednesday would hopefully determine how Mr Mason was killed.
Acting Supt Waddell said it was unclear if his death was related to the altercation earlier in the night, possibly with security guards, at the leagues club, which was about 500m away from where his body was found.
"There were a number of altercations that night."
He confirmed a number of cars had been seized.
+ A Go Fund Me appeal has been set up to raise money for Jayden Mason's family.