This will be the last post for the week about who Andrew Allard is. This post will share with you the insights of several friends. One of Abbie’s(Andrew’s sister) best friends, Alisa Etkie, who knew Andrew and saw him a lot because she spent a lot of time at their house.
“Andrew always had a smile on his face, which brought many smiles to the faces of others. I remember one time when he sneakily took my purse when I wasn’t looking and hid it from me. I looked everywhere for it, and then asked him about it. “Andrew, where’s my purse?” He said, “I don’t know” and tried to hold back a smile. Finally, he returned my purse. I’ll always remember his light-hearted spirit and how bad he was at telling a lie without cracking a revealing smile.”
Abbie, Andrew’s sister, shares this:
Being his big sister, I saw the good, the great, the bad, and the ugly. But throughout our lives we were always there for each other. Because Andrew and I were only sixteen months apart, people would always ask if Andrew and I were twins. Of course, I would always make it a point to let them know I was older. And of course, Andrew would always make it a point to tell them he was in the same grade as me. Because we were home schooled from the very beginning, almost every hour of every day was spent together. He was my other half; the connection we had made it feel like we were actually twins.
Andrew was the silly one. He was always goofing off, making every situation fun. I remember his last Halloween back in 2006. We were having friends come over and going trick or treating in my huge neighborhood. Thirty minutes before they were suppose to arrive at my house, Andrew said to me, “So, what should I wear for a costume??” Being all concerned and serious, I replied, “Andrew! Why are you thinking of this now?! You should be ready!” He went into our attic and compiled all these random items and put together a costume. “Flava Flaveeeeeeeee!” he said as placed the handmade clock necklace around his neck. My friends and I all just laughed with him at his strange costume.
So many people remember Andrew for his contagious smile, compassionate heart, and love for a good time. I would have to agree that those things really did define who he was. In addition to that, Andrew had a love for life—never wasting a moment doing something he didn’t want to do (unless it was English homework that we would both put off together.) He was very self-motivated to accomplish the goals he had for himself. He wanted to pitch the best fast ball; he worked hard. He wanted to reach out to his friends; he spent quality time with them. He wanted to play a sweet guitar solo; he practiced—for many hours at a loud volume! His love for different things was very apparent, not because he just spoke about them—and let me assure you… he spoke about them. A lot!—but because his time was spent on what was important to him. Many days I get caught in the cycle of doing the same old thing. Wake up, homework, eat, class, gym, sleep. I do things just to get through them, so I can get to the next thing I need to get through and so on. Andrew was never like that. He always lived in the here and now. His example of loving things enough to made time for them still teaches me that is how I need to live my life. I miss so many opportunities to love those who need it because my focus is everywhere but where I am at the moment.
Out of every human being on this earth, Andrew was the one I was closest with by far. We shared laughter, tears, arguments, joys, pain, and friendships. Though I miss him terribly, I know his influence lives on. His name is on a flippin’ building! I hope my legacy will impact people tremendously like his does.
Joey Libby, Andrew’s band mate and the “L” in AKL (the band that Andrew played in) shares these memories:
“I remember the first day I ever really got to start talking with Andrew was when I was either 8 or 9 years old in the minor league field baseball dugout. The thing that stuck out to me the most was the never ending smile on his face. And then there’s the times with the band and me going to visit him in Florida. No matter what vacations I go on in the future that will always be the greatest trip of my life. One thing I’ve never told anyone because I guess its just not that important to anyone except myself – but after everything that happened I tried to imagine the last time I ever got to see Andrew’s smile and that was the day before I left Florida and we were throwing a tennis ball with gloves on the street he lived on. I can’t remember which one of us threw it over eachothers head but Andrew had laughed over something I said before one of us went to get it and that one image will never leave me for the rest of my life. I tell Andrew’s story at every concert AKL plays now and I’m always going to. The main thing I say is “after me saying this the point I’m trying to make is God is over us and watching us and I know Andrew’s doing the same and he always will be.” Andrew will always be #1 in my heart.”
Bottom line, Andrew will always be missed and always remembered. Yes, we have a soon to be finished youth center that will bear his name and will stand for many years to come. Many will pass through the doors and may never have the chance to know who Andrew was. But who Andrew really was, the essential Andrew, will always live on. The youth center is being built so that we will have one more opportunity to reach outside of our own building and be a blessing to our community. That is who Andrew was, he was never self-serving, always looking out for others who may have a need, and he never missed an opportunity to share the love of Jesus with people. My prayer is the legacy of Andrew’s life will live on through the youth center.
We love, miss, and wait for the day when we will see Andrew again – but for now, we will continue to share the love of Jesus with many young people throughout Central New Hampshire.