After my freshman year of college, I decided to transfer to St. Thomas. I did not want to live on campus, so I turned to the St. Thomas Facebook page to try to find a place to live. I received many messages from people who needed another roommate. One of those messages was from Ria. I almost didn’t live with her, but I am so grateful I did. Ria was one of my first friends at St. Thomas, and we ended up becoming really great friends. I also met so many of my best friends because of her. I thoroughly believe that my first year at St. Thomas wouldn’t have been as enjoyable had I not met Ria.
Ria was one of a kind. She always had a smile on her face, she was always laughing. She was so gorgeous, so kind. She was barely ever upset or mad. Whenever something exciting or new had happened in my life, she was always so excited and happy for me. It wasn’t until she passed that I realized the impact she had on my life. What if she never sent me that Facebook message? The past year and a half of my life would have been completely different. Being friends with Ria changed my life for the better, and I know she had that same impact on so many others.
I walk past Ria’s empty bedroom in our apartment every day. I think about her every day. It’s hard not to think about what life would be like right now if she were alive. Some days are harder than others, but it is comforting to know that where ever she is, she is looking over us and smiling. I love you Ria.