We only met last Thursday Michael. I was stripping down doors and you were digging a hole and we only chatted briefly and smiled a few times, but something about you touched me and that is why, today, I have been so very sad.
You can know someone an age and not really care about them at all and you can know someone a day and wish only the best for them. Your smile revealed a kind, innocent, trustworthy and cheerful person and because of that you stood out. I thought to myself, 'What a lovely young man? I am so pleased to have met such a nice person. I am looking forward to seeing him around and getting to know him. He is different. He is a true gem.' In this world of increasingly extreme egotism, superficiality and hard-heartedness, you were a breath of fresh air.
I found out later that day you were to be married to a young lady who obviously knew a good thing when she saw one and wanted to snap you up. She must be a lovely young lady and her heart must be aching now. How will she ever get over losing such a lovely young man? How will your parents get over losing such a lovely son?
I have been told you were always smiling and had such a good sense of humour you never stopped laughing. I am also told you worked very hard with no complaint. But I could tell that from the moment I met you.
The day after I met you you died and with you went your smile, your laughter, your cheerfulness, your future life with your fiancé and your future children. You had your whole life ahead of you and you had so much going for you. It is a very sad day today for San Carlos, for me and surely for hundreds of other people who were lucky enough to have met someone who made you stop and think, 'Now there's a diamond.'
I wish I could go back to last Thursday and warn you of the dangers of motorbikes and to give you your future back, but that will just be a video clip that will play in my mind. All I can hope for is that you dying and the pain it will cause to so many people will persuade some of your young friends to shun motorbikes. There are too many bouquets of flowers attached to trees, lampposts and street signs around Ibiza and I'm sure most of them will have a motorbike crash story behind them.
I am sure there will not be a dry eye in the church in San Carlos tomorrow at noon as we all remember your smiling face, some people having known you all their lives and some, like me, having known you for just one day.