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Yonie Sally

12/13/86 - 05/12/06

"I am a Beautiful, Innocent, Emotional, Confident, and Worthwhile Young Man!" In his own words, that is Yonie’s “I AM” statement. It is not a vision or a goal, but a statement. Yonie has always made a statement. At six years old, Yonie wanted to try Karate. At 12, he became the youngest 2nd degree black belt in Las Vegas. It’s a belt that he earned with his dedication and hunger to succeed in a school where belts were not for sale. A year or so later, Yonie suggested an interest in playing the piano. Three years later, his teacher called him a musical genius in the making. He could read and play any piece he chose with only a small amount of direction. Around that same time, Yonie decided that his casual love of tumbling could lead to more. A year and a half later, Yonie was competing in regional and national gymnastics competitions.

While Yonie continued to master his interests, so did he excel in school (especially in mathematics and writing). Yonie always makes the most difficult math problems look so easy to solve. Five months after his 11th birthday, Yonie exhibited the cool, calm, and collected temperament that most adults envy in the face of unthinkable horror. Yonie found his two and half year old baby brother floating face down in the backyard Jacuzzi. Whereas most of us would have panicked and screamed, Yonie got busy…saving his brother’s precious life. Anyone that has had the merit to be a friend of Yonie’s considers themselves truly blessed, without exception. His siblings have never doubted the magnitude of his love for them or the lengths to which he would go for them. Everyone loves Yonie, ranging from the very young to the very old. His kindness, charm, wit, and willingness to help, make his absence unacceptable. So many lives have changed with thanks to Yonie…that will never change. As brief as nineteen years are, Yonie has managed to leave his mark in our world as he surely does in the world to come.

Yonie Lives!