We are posting this year’s Annual Fiesta speech by David Enzer, who was a long-time friend of Drew. If you did not have a chance to attend our event, please read David’s words which honor Drew and give insight to our mission atDrew Silvern Dollars For Scholars.
“A few words to start off: Welcome to all of you, so nice to see how successful this event has been over time– otherwise how could I end up being chosen as a speaker?
It is also nice to be able to speak on the topic of Drew. Many others have shared great stories at this event about his capabilities as well as his depth and courage during his short time here and thruout his personal battle. It means a lot to me to be able to share some of my impressions.
I met Drew in junior high at Millikan in Sherman Oaks — very close to here. I went there on permit since we didn’t live in the district. Many of his friends here today already knew him from elementary school at Dixie canyon, and had already experienced his loyalty and friendship, his exploits on the athletic filed and his success in the classroom.
At that age, I spent most of my free time on the court, as did Drew and a lot of his friends here today – whether it be basketball or football or tennis. Drew was a fierce competitor, but a gentleman on the court. Meeting Drew on the basketball court was a unique experience and I remember it quite clearly: floppy curly hair all over the place, a smile with braces sticking out, head cocked to the side slightly, and a stance that dared you to move successfully in any direction with the ball. He shot was like no other we had ever seen: I wondered how he could shoot a knuckleball so well.
Athlete and gentleman. Whereas all the other kids were aggressive in playing style and mouthing off at each other or cussing at each other, Drew was a silent warrior.
Drew did not lose his temper or complain at any time regardless of outcomes. Good day or bad day, he never changed. He played team ball and maintained composure. It was inspiring to be around the guy, he was mature and uniquely refined at an early age and I admired that a lot.
Drew set an example. Academically and socially drew was also very talented, took the challenging classes, played musical instruments, and he participated in clubs. O yea, and the cuter girls tended to follow him around. For that reason and so many others, you wanted to be around him.
Drew generated no friction. When he told jokes he did so quietly – he didn’t need to shout to be heard. When he had advice he gave it and expected you to listen. He wanted to set standards to live by and expected his friends to toe the line as well. His interest in john wooden helped him live a disciplined life where success was measured daily but he didn’t need broadcast his achievements.
Drew was a Giver. Drew gave of himself when most others would not have the will or strength.
I have read Drew’s journals where he details his quest to live an unpredictable life, yet try to enjoy his time here, asking the questions we all have about our place in the world and trying to make sense of it. I was inspired to learn he had devoted time to his elementary class reading programs and enjoyed that a lot, and stayed with it even during his own tough times. He wanted to make a contribution to others and didn’t let his condition take him off course. He was committed to friends and community and spiritual oneness.
Drew had strength to make very hard decisions. After high school, college and a few years of medical school pursuing a career as a doctor, drew pivoted 180 degrees to pursue a career in writing. So he knew that the economics he was walking away from would be far greater in likelihood than where he was heading.
It was a big sacrifice but he wanted to pursue the goal that inspired him not just the economic one. Writing his journal in the UT was a fulfillment of that decision and how he could tell his story to others. That took a lot of guts.
In closing I’d like to say thank you to all of the folks that make this program possible, lila silvern and others. And all the friends of Drew like me that are here to help celebrate his legacy. Those of you in the Scholars group hopefully find success ahead and remember some of the things you heard about Drew here today that hopefully inspire you, and take them with you on your own journey.”