Coquitlam Metro-Ford Soccer Club Soccer for life!

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Neil Sharma
Neil Sharma

I only came to know recently of your passing now that I live outside of Canada…news of your departure caught me unawares. It’s not a surprise (reading through this website) that you touched so many hearts throughout your amazing journey. My luck was to be your only friend invited home to a wonderful homemade Italian birthday dinner in grade 1.

Johnny invited another friend and the four of us enjoyed that evening with your parents. I was the shy Fijian kid who could barely speak English and you were the kind hearted Italian who looked out for me on the playground. I lived up the street from you on Georgia Street and our years of bumping into each other even though our circle of friends changed was nothing short of warmth and reminiscence. How could I forget the day you and I finally fended off the two bullies from the rival elementary school. You obviously took on the bigger fellow and they never bothered picking on us again – you always stood your ground and fighting was a last means to your solutions. Though I always outraced you in sprints even in high school, I never stopped to marvel at the slowpoke whose brilliance on the soccer field left everyone in the dust. To know that you went on and inspired an uncountable number of souls is breathtaking and humbling.

I speak to many audiences around the world in my leadership seminars and always use you as an example of passion, tenacity and attitude – your respectfulness, kindness and good. Heart are the everlasting memory and blessing your parents instilled in you…thank you for being a part of my life.

Neil Sharma the Fijian up the road

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