Trying to verbalize the meaning, influence, impact, and joyous reign Spencer had upon my life does not serve him merely enough justice. He was everything I could have asked for in a friend, and a dream come true in a man. Spence was charming, witty, exceptional, one-of-a-kind, brilliant and incredible. He had this refinement and knowledge that allowed him to grace the world with such a power and fortitude along with an aptitude to impact the lives of those around him. A deep and meaningful impression of Spencer has been left upon all of our hearts and minds. Whether it was his adoring personality, gorgeous looks, or genuine charm, I was drawn to him.

Spence had this certain magnetism that made him truly unique and matchless; plus he had some unforgettable dance moves, comical jokes, and notable antics. My memories of him will be forever cherished and longed for. Remembering Spence is something I do every day. I remember his laugh, his smile, his charm and his company. He had this uncanny ability to put a smile on my face every time I saw him. He lit up the room the second he walked in; his funniness was masterful and original.

The devotion he had to his friends, family, and life was unrivaled. He made us laugh and ultimately inspired us to improve our lives, our relationships and ourselves. Spence always had a way of making his friends feel comfortable, welcomed and valued. My friendship with him was merely a microcosm of the effort and dedication he put forth towards the rest of his family and friends.

One of my fondest and most bittersweet memories of Spence is the last day I saw him. On the day of July 21, 2006, Spencer Wood, David Johnson and I headed to Avila to enjoy the concert that was taking place on the golf course. I remember watching the sunset atop the golf course with the view of the ocean that day. It was unforgettable. When we left the concert Spencer had mentioned how it was one of the best days he’s ever had. We spent the day at the concert and continued to enjoy ourselves at Mr. Rick’s. Spencer was waiting for a ride after things were winding down. From that point on, the only thing we are sure of is how he died. Spencer unfortunately fell, hitting the soft spot behind his right ear. It was confirmed that Spencer’s fall is what killed him, he died of a cerebral hematoma – bleeding of the brain. There was absolutely nothing anyone could have done. It wasn’t a lack of sobriety, it could have happened anywhere at any point.

Spencer gave me my most valued gift. It was a perspective on life itself that would have gone unforeseen without him. Spencer taught me how to unconditionally believe and support my siblings. He was very expressive in valuing and loving his family. He taught me that loving and accepting my friends for all they were, was essential in understanding them. Spence gave me a strength and love that is truly unmatched and irreplaceable. His kindness, warmth and acceptance were extraordinary.

Last year is filled with my most favorite moments in his presence. Reliving those memories will bring him back to life whenever missing him has become intolerable. It’s eerie, surreal, and completely bizarre to think he’s not here anymore.

Comprehending and accepting his ascent to heaven has been so difficult and some days unbearable. The unique bond and friendship we shared was so easily instigated with a simple conversation and will forever thrive, dwell, and exist in my own heart. I am so lucky to have known him, befriend him, and love him. In the short time Spencer and I spent together, every second was a blessing and I am indebted to him for what he has done in my life. The passion he had for life is reflected in those he touched, changed, and amplified. Whether it is how he helped us or loved us, ultimately Spencer moved us. He was truly an amazing son, brother, and friend.

Sarah Leilani Arceo is a business administration and marketing senior and a friend of Spencer Wood.

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