Thursday, April 5, 2007

Max & Adri

A little over two years ago Max and I were laying in V-shapes on tiny couches in a small apartment in Kaiserslautern, Germany. I was due to return back to Utah in about a month and we talked about our plans for home until morning. The plans involved the mountains and jobs but mostly girls. Luckily everything doesn't always pan out in the same fashion as our imagination plans. In Max and Adri's case it did and I couldn't be happier for both of them. I was asked to shoot their wedding a couple of weeks ago, and amid the happy occasion of a life being started toghether, the value of friendship and sharing life with one another manifested itself as well.
After high school I went a different path than the crew from high school. They all headed down south to St. George for college and I came down to Salt Lake and started working at a photo lab downtown. I was pretty alone and with the exception of some 28 year olds who went to high school with my older brother I didn't have too many friends.
Richard Jones had a unique knack for befriending people and before long I had a pass to Brighton and through Richard and snowboarding I was being introduced to a whole new group of kids my age. In that time after high school when the person you are going to be for the rest of your life seems to be formed the most, I met some great people who treated each other well and enjoyed life, music, and riding. Through Richard I met Max, Adri, Bianca, Ryan, Johnny, Derek, Dave,...etc, all people I ran into at the wedding again after drifting the way that life facilitates. Although I still feel like a bit of an outsider I recognize Richards unspoken philosophy of bringing people closer in all of them.
At Richard's funeral barely 3 years ago his uncle and cousin Johnny played Neil Young's "Heart of Gold" on guitar in his memory and I wasn't the only person in the crowded stake center who made the connection. Richard's passing not only brought alot of us together but pushed both Max and myself to figure out the loose ends in our lives and go on missions. After being in Germany for a year Max arrived to the same mission in what I don't feel was a coincidence. Days before returning home to Utah I was asked to briefly talk about my mission in front of a group of missionaries of which Max was included. I spoke of what motivated me to leave home and will never forget seeing Max in the pews knowing that he felt the same and missed his friend just like me.
Now two years later I spent a night seeing all those friends again as well as Richards mother and realized how grateful I am for these friendships made stronger through tragedy. The wedding was beautiful and I hope Richard somehow knows what we are all up to.

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