Vai's View: Vai's View: Farewell to Tom Mazza, a friend who told it like it was


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  • Red Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 18, 2012 1:34 p.m.


    I just read this as somehow I missed it last month.

    I think it was awesome. You are a great example for all of us Utah Mormons.

    Keep it up!

  • LisaClancy Beaufort, SC
    Sept. 16, 2012 9:47 p.m.

    What a wonderful friendship, Vai! Makes me miss all my NY friends and family - Maz would fit right in! RIP Maz - thanks for enriching ALL of our lives!!

  • Heart and Mind BUENA VISTA, VA
    Aug. 25, 2012 6:32 p.m.

    Ditto with the waterworks as I read your fine article. I was at a dinner table with the Editor of the Deseret News when one of the other guests told him that you were his favorite part of the paper. I would have to agree.

  • fred Vaenuku san mateo, ca
    Aug. 20, 2012 10:29 p.m.

    Vai enjoy your column , From your story I almost believe I knew Mr. Mazza. Always looking forward for next story. I got to meet the CEO Desert news two weeks ago in Oakland temple he came to speak to our YSA group in the bay. He spoke very highly of you . Anyway thanks for all you do.

  • ogmson Mapleton, Utah
    Aug. 19, 2012 7:47 p.m.

    Good grief Vai, you create a condition worse than the longest day of Alfalfa cutting in Utah.

    It's not very often I read the DN online looking for tissues, but you did it. To say Thank you for telling us all about Maz seems insufficient...But, Thank you. Thank you for the terrific human interest, emotional, funny and sensitive insight to a friend. Thank you for reminding us what is most important in life. Thank you for sharing. Thank you.

    Make sure you tell Maz's family thank you for his life from your fans. My life feels enriched just reading about Maz. Love your articles.

  • junehenry Provo, UT
    Aug. 19, 2012 12:46 p.m.

    Dear Brother Vai,
    I read your articles every time I see your name. You have influenced my thinking and to you Mahalo. Brother Shumway and I loved your dear son when he served so very well in Makaha. Thank you so much for sharing your son in Hawaii. Argie and Gene Shumway

  • Spikey Layton, UT
    Aug. 18, 2012 5:01 p.m.

    Love people like Maz. Thank you so much for sharing with us your great stories with Maz. I, too, felt like I knew him through your story.

  • Eddie Syracuse, UT
    Aug. 18, 2012 4:08 p.m.

    WOW! ! ! !

  • eagle Provo, UT
    Aug. 18, 2012 3:40 p.m.

    Great article, very touching and well-written!

  • clintharris Saint George, Utah
    Aug. 18, 2012 3:19 p.m.

    Vai, what a beautiful story of true and devoted friendship. Having served myself and sent three sons on missions, I am moved to tears. Mahalo for sharing it.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Aug. 18, 2012 3:06 p.m.

    Incredible story. I'm so sorry you lost your friend, especially to such a disease as ALS. Everybody needs somebody like Tom Mazza in their lives. Sounds like he had a heart of gold. What a wonderful tribute this article was to him.

  • leonard Oakley, ID
    Aug. 18, 2012 2:34 p.m.

    awesome story-- thanks so much

  • Bifftacular Spanish Fork, Ut
    Aug. 18, 2012 10:22 a.m.

    Dang hay fever. Thanks Vai. Imagine the friendship you would have lost had you said something in retort when Maz first spoke to you. What a good example of how to treat others . I wish I would have known Maz - what a character. Keep up the good work. I love you articles.

  • Kjallbee Orem, UT
    Aug. 18, 2012 9:24 a.m.

    Thanks, Vai. I hope to meet Tom one day.

  • timpClimber Provo, UT
    Aug. 18, 2012 7:25 a.m.

    As usual your article was uplifting and memory invoking. Had a Greek uncle Tony who could double for Maz. Hope you gather together some of your best articles and publish a book. It would be a best seller in the LDS community.

  • thenemo1 u.s.a., NY
    Aug. 18, 2012 2:02 a.m.

    You warmed my heart and took away the stress of life for a while. with this article.
    Thank you

  • Keen American Fork, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 7:55 p.m.

    Mahalo Vai for your story about Maz. Reading about him and his stories and how kind he was to the guys in the white shirts, due in part to your friendship, reminded me of my family members who are not Mormons and are kind, funny, and helpful. May God comfort the family of Maz and rest his soul.

  • ds7 American Fork, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 7:39 p.m.

    sometimes you're the only book of mormon some people will ever read.

  • 93 COUGAR Orem, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 6:31 p.m.


    I'm typing with tears in my eyes. Great article. Thanks for sharing a great story.

  • dallasfreeways Austin, TX
    Aug. 17, 2012 6:14 p.m.

    Beautiful story. Thanks for sharing it with us, Vai!

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 6:12 p.m.

    Something in the air here today...Sniff...
    Beautiful...thanks, Vai. I had an uncle you would have loved as you did Maz.

  • Robb Cundick Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 5:54 p.m.

    Thanks so much, Vai. This is one of your best. I'm so impressed that you were able to accept Tom's initial frank criticism without being threatened by it and then go on to become close friends. It would have been so easy to just brush him off. What a great example of loving and respecting everyone and not being afraid to engage with someone who had a greatly different background from your own.

  • JRJ Pocatello, ID
    Aug. 17, 2012 5:24 p.m.

    I love the Lord's children like your Maz. They help us stay grounded and real. What a wonderful friendship you have shared with us. I have such respect for people who can say "no" to the white shirts and yet still understand the moments of sacredness that are important to people and do it with such dignity. There is a time and place for all things. I'm sure Paradise is more fun for having welcomed Maz through the gates.

  • UtesJazzCowboys HERRIMAN, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 4:15 p.m.

    Thanks for the ongoing inspiration you provide in each column you write.

  • JayJay Sandy, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 4:02 p.m.

    Thanks, that was a great article.

  • common sense in Idaho Pocatello, id
    Aug. 17, 2012 3:56 p.m.

    As a father who recently had a son return from the Philadelphia mission I just wanted to say thank you Vai for a wonderful story. It also brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for making my day.

  • aunt lucy Looneyville, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 3:56 p.m.

    This world needs more people like him. THanks for sharing!

  • Kabede Laie, HI
    Aug. 17, 2012 3:44 p.m.

    In reading this article, I felt like I knew Tom myself. I could practically hear him loudly telling his stories in a brusque Philly accent. Thank you for sharing this touching story!

  • aghast SYRACUSE, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 3:42 p.m.

    You did it again Vai. Always looking for your column.

  • jpjazz Sandy, UT
    Aug. 17, 2012 3:39 p.m.

    Thank you Vai, each week I await your column, IMO you are the best DN writer. I lived in Philadelphia for 7 years during the 80's while the church was beginning to show signs of growth. I believe It is because of members like yourself who put down roots and stayed in the area that the church has grown to become recognized as a force for good in the region.

    Thank you again for all you do, I look forward to joining you and all the Philadelphia Saints when the temple is dedicated!