My dear, dear friend and leader Rick Bastian passed away yesterday. I can hardly type those words without my chest tightening up and my eyes filling with tears. I know Rick Bastian better as Brother Bastian, one of the counselors in the previous bishopric of the University 32nd Ward I attend. Brother Bastian was always an incredible example of faith, love and strength to me. You see, about two and a half years ago his oldest son and youngest daughter were in a car accident while driving home from a family vacation to Lake Powell. They didn’t survive. I can’t imagine what it must have felt like to lose two children at the same time. At that time, Brother Bastian and his wife, KayeLynn, were incredibly strong and bore testimony of their love for the Savior and their knowledge of His hand in all things. My heart ached for them. It was clearly hard for them, but they never wavered; they never once asked “Why us?” and they remained strong and immovable in the gospel. I learned a lot about faith and trust from their example. A little under a year after that I was faced with the hardest trial I had met in my then 24 years. I was lost and confused and hurting and though I was good at hiding it, Brother Bastian knew it. He pulled me aside one day and told me that he loved me. He told me the Lord loved me, too and that He knew what I was going through and He would always be there for me. I knew Brother Bastian’s words were true because I knew he had been through unbearably hard times and he was making it through with the help of his Savior. His words brough peace to my soul. In the next few months, Brother Bastian became Bishop Bastian of the LDS Business College student ward. I have seen Bishop and Sister Bastian every now and again at various events and activities and every time I am reminded of their ability to be strong amidst trial. Today my heart is broken for KayeLynn and her family. I can’t begin to imagine how hard the passing of her husband must be. I know their family will be reunited one day, and what a glorious day that will be. I know the Lord’s hand is in all things and that Rick and his two children were called to return to their Heavenly Father for a reason. Please keep a prayer of comfort for KayeLynn and her family in your heart.
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