Today, I attended a memorial service for Brent Bills. His influence on me was profound. He was a man who loved liberty and worked tirelessly to support and promote it. Few people, if any, have had a greater impact on my political thinking and thirst for education as he had. He was a driving force behind my desire to learn and teach Social Studies. I am blessed to teach what I teach where I teach, because I have no greater way to carry on his legacy than to pass on the knowledge he gave me to other people.
Every year, he worked tirelessly to put together the best fireworks show in the country. The show was put on in only a small part because he liked fireworks. The large motivator behind the show has always been his desire to teach and share true principles with those who would listen. What made the show great was that the thousands who attended learned truths about how liberty works, and about the principles that founded the country that they wouldn’t learn anywhere else.
He had a profound love and respect for the founders of the United States. He was a Constitutional scholar. He had an extensive library of learning and never stopped adding to it. Last I knew, he was reading the collected writings Thomas Jefferson. These writings are collected in a set of at least a dozen volumes. The particular set that Brent had was being read for the first time, and he had to cut open the pages as he read them. He wholeheartedly believed that America is great because America is good, and was as good a person as anybody could hope to be. He truly led by example.
He worked to pass his learning on from all who would listen, and to learn from those who would talk. I was blessed to have many conversations with Brent, and I never felt that my time spent talking with him could have been better spent on anything else. His life was a life of love, service, integrity, and hard work. He did more in his short life than most ever accomplish. Nobody can say that he should have done more with his time. I knew and respected him as a religious leader, an orthodontist, a Scout leader, and a friend.
His loss is a huge loss to those who knew him, and to those who love liberty. He is undoubtedly working on the other side of the veil with the same passion and energy as he worked here. Even though I am blessed to have a knowledge of the Plan of Salvation, and to know that the end of this earth life is not the end, I will still feel the huge void that his passing left, and I look forward to seeing him again, on the other side.