"To thank means to demonstrate gratitude, word that comes from the Latin gratus. This means feeling pleased or delighted. I want to say that never in my life I understood and lived that feeling so deeply. On one hand it seems absurd, because I am passing through the deepest pain I have ever suffered: to lost a great love. But actually I didn't lose him, we didn't lose him. Who knew Gabriel, who exchanged moments with him and who heard his history after the tragic ending of the accomplishment of his dream actually won a lot. We won the opportunity to know his young and charitable spirit, his will of improving the world, his hunger for knowledge, his love to the neighbor. We won the sensation of being the most interesting person in the actual moment, here and now, because Gabriel paralyzed the time and the external atmosphere when he talked with somebody, paying total attention. In fact, he was the best example of "being entire", defined by the Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa. Besides, his character was very uprightly.
Gabriel was always being fascinated, as a child that sees things for the very first time. This characteristic was one of my favorites. And, while he was getting enchanted by the colors, the nature and the human beings, he enchanted we all, showing how beautiful it is the world. He was also a flowing human being, a chameleon. For him it was not enough to observe, he needed to participate. He wanted to know how is the work is of each person, witnessing to the maximum the division of the work, as we studied in economy: weeding the earth, darning a rug, driving trucks, writing articles about education. He needed to feel in the skin the temperature of the water, to see a view from the top of the mountains or trees, to dress the colorful clothes of different people, to dance all rhythms.
He went to a trip around the world in search of wisdom, the most important one, which brings the answers for the internal doubts and pulses. Answers that were revealed while he was among different realities of nations, he saw the poverty under several angles and also the wealth of the human soul.
My dear Gab was beautiful. Of pure soul, of true eyes. And he will be forever in our hearts. As I said in the wake, I learned with him the plenitude of love and to like my own self. I feel fully thankful to the life and God for my love for him, and also for having accepted his defects. I loved his essence, I understood the truth on my own side, the illusion I built about who he was, such as we do with everybody we meet. And when my illusion was over, I was unhesitatingly still on his side, loving him even more, although it seems contradictory.
I feel thankful for the wave of love and solidarity that rose during Gabriel's search. I feel equally thankful for all people involved in that history. I am happy for each lovely word, each affectionate glance, each noble gesture. In this hard period of searches, the people showed their more beautiful side. I thank the commotion of each Brazilian and of each foreigner person. I thank the donations and everybody that worked in the searches. Thank you media press for giving the opportunity to spread his ideals and to increase the praying chain. And that wonderful chain! I will never forget the pledge and dedication of the Malawian, Canadian, Argentinean, Brazilian and all guys that climbed the Mount Mulanje to find Gab. Thanks to God we were well succeeded because Gabriel returned to his place and to his family, receiving the much deserved farewells and homage. I thank the immense affection of the family and of the friends, mine and of Gabriel, who will always be in my heart. Especially, thank you my brother, André, for being at my side in Malawi. Without you I would not have supported the pain of Gabriel’s death.
In one of the last days Gabriel and I were together, in the Victoria Falls, Zambia, we screamed a noisy THANK YOU God for our stay in that place and for so much beauty (see attached a picture of that day). We were deeply in love and very happy. And this is how I want to keep feeling. That gigantic wave of love woke up a powerful force inside of me that I didn't imagine to possess. A force to win that pain and to feel happy for being alive, keep walking with faith, as the music we used to sing together says....