July 27, 2015 *Elder Wagner's good friend from High School died suddenly and this was his response.
I knew Pedro extremely well. I studied with him, I ran with him, I worked with him. I can't believe it. I have actually thought about him a lot on my mission, not just once but multiple times. Which is odd, because I don't think about people from home to much. He was the definition of integrity a great leader and a wonderful example of what a true friend should be like. I have known him for a long time, but we became better friends my senior year when me and Max convinced him to join Cross country. I remember a race where he set a goal to break 20mins for the 5k so I told him that I would run with him and set the pace so he would not fall back. He did it! He was more of a sprinter type so later on in track we would always joke about who would win in a 200 meter Sprint. Just as I had walked him through how to do the whole distance thing he walked me through how to be a sprinter. He even showed me how to use blocks haha. He beat me by a second which is pretty good when it is that short of a race.
We always sat next to each other in class, and on the way out we would talk about what we thought we knew about politics, ethics and history. He was wicked smart, and loved to teach people how to do an equation or how to an easier way to memorize material. He never acted like he was superior to anyone and related with everyone. I love him and have nothing but complete respect for who he was and what he did.
This life is not the end. I know it. Whether we live 80 years, 20 years, 15 months or 2 days it does not matter, we will all shut our eyes at some point. It is easier for us to accept someone's death when they are 90, because they have lived their life, and had every opportunity. But for someone who's life is cut short we often say " they had so much ahead of them" which in our perspective they did, but in Gods there is so much more in store.
Pray for the Rivera family that their hearts will be comforted.
Honestly after this news I feel like going through the details of this weeks events should be saved for another time. Sufficeth to say worldly pursuits like knowledge, power, work, play, and pleasure crumble before moments as real and as sobering as this. Why? because the only thing that matters is love, true unselfish, undefiled love. When that pure love is at risk of being broken we begin to wonder about the big picture, we start to ask the big questions. I know that those questions can be answered. Right now I have the opportunity to help others find those answers.
Love Elder Wagner