A Pioneer tribute to Alyssa Eav, the girl who changed Lehi High
Love. Forgiveness. Compassion. Friendship. Alyssa Eav embodied these attributes every day of her seventeen years. Her passing on Saturday, July 25, was felt throughout the entire town. To know Alyssa was to adore her. She didn’t see labels. She didn’t see cliques. Alyssa saw people for who they were and loved them for it. Lehi High School may have lost a beloved student that day, but her fellow Pioneers agree that her sweet memory will never be absent.
“There was so much love in her. She adored telling you things, everything going on in her life, as well as recalling wonderful memories and conversations from before. I want to love as much as Alyssa did when I grow up,” said Haley Duckwitz. “She would often text me just to ask how my day was going. Alyssa was so caring. I was able to go to a few dances with her in my group and she would always be the life of the party,” said Paizley Mattinson. Tanner McAllister said, “Being Alyssa’s friend meant hugs around every corner of LHS, it was texts reading ‘Why aren’t you in seminary?’, and it was paragraphs of her telling me how awesome I was! She changed Lehi High School in so many ways. She looked up to a lot of people, but now that I think about it, Lehi High really looked up to her.”
Her friends remember her as someone who held enough school pride for the whole student body. When she was part of the cheering crowd, she was in her element. “My favorite memory with Alyssa was after our last home football game. She was nearly in tears because she was so sad we wouldn’t have another one at Lehi. It made me sad to see her like that, but she gave me the biggest hug and we took a picture. We drove her to In-N-Out with our friends after and she said, ‘Although it was the last home game it sure was the best!’ Alyssa supported everything and everyone because she had so much school spirit. It didn’t matter what- if there was an event of invitation- she was there. She’d be cheering the loudest and wearing the brightest smile. She never let a dull moment go,” said Brayden Ogden. Ashton Adamson said, “Alyssa Eav was the funnest person at Lehi High. She always brought energy to every game, activity, dance and conversation. She was always excited and truly lived in the moment. I don’t think anyone who went to Lehi the last two years wasn’t affected by her light.”
Alyssa was also known for her loyalty, warmth, and authenticity. Mylee Clements said, “She had a heart of pure gold and seriously, truly, loved every human. I will miss the many times she came up to me in the Commons and would talk to me for a while. Alyssa made an impact on everyone she met.” Aden Pernia said, “She didn’t just feel love for people, she showed it, which is rare. She influenced Lehi High School in the best way that anyone can influence a group of people- she treated everyone like they were family.”
Serving others was on Alyssa’s daily to-do list. Her junior year she was crowned Homecoming Princess as well as Honorary Miss Lehi, she gracefully used both platforms to spread kindness and positivity. Sydnie Smith said, “Every time I saw her she had a smile on her face.” Many students claimed that Alyssa could befriend anyone. “She was one of the most caring, loving, energetic people to ever walk the face of the earth. She was a Disney princess without the crown, but in many ways, she wore one all the same. She was constantly looking out for others and making sure they had a friend. No matter who you were or what you did, you knew Alyssa and the infinite love she beamed with day in and day out,” said Daniel McAllister. Ashlynn Cox said, “She never let anyone or their accomplishments go unnoticed. It was because of Alyssa that a lot of students were so united.
Towards the end of her life, Alyssa faced trials that most people don’t face in their lifetime. She was an example of strength and hope to the community. Alyssa’s fight was inspiring, and with the help of her family and friends, celebrities such as Tanner Mangum, Billie Eilish, Rudy Gobert, Taysom Hill, Danny Green, the BYU Cheer Team, and Cosmo the Cougar sent in videos of encouragement throughout her hospital time. “She was positive and happy no matter the circumstances or situation surrounding her. We all have our challenges, and she rose to the occasion and took whatever came her way with a smile on her face, that’s the way I want to live my life,” said her classmate Brayden John.
A celebration of Alyssa’s life took place on Friday, July 31 at Wines Park. Those who attended the memorial heard messages from her family and friends. A purple balloon send-off was the highlight of the event; a city-wide “thank you” to Alyssa from loved ones for blessing their lives as well as to pay tribute to her own. Shortly after, friends and family were invited to a viewing at Wing Mortuary across from Alyssa’s alma mater, Lehi High School. “She was an influence to me that I can’t thank her enough for, our memories together will be cherished the rest of my life,” said Nate Westwood.
Alyssa’s live-streamed funeral service on Saturday, August 1, included many heartfelt talks from family members. One speaker said, “She changed the high school.” Taylor Riddle said, “I believe she did change LHS for the better, we will miss her light in the Lehi halls.” Gage Blackwell said, “Alyssa will be a part of Lehi forever. While there will never be a soul like her to ever walk the Lehi hallways again, her impact will continually be felt through the student body, faculty, staff, and community for years to come.” With every act of kindness shared in the walls of the high school, we will remember the girl who played such a unifying role in our time as students.
Alyssa Eav was a gift to the Pioneers, her influence will forever be kept close to the hearts of all who knew her.