Vail Daily letter: Thanks for love and support
It has been noted countless times before what an incredible place the Vail Valley is to live. Typically, the comment is made in reference to its incredible beauty, perfect weather, abundance of recreational activities, and laid-back, fun-loving, mountain town culture. Today I make this comment, with more strength and conviction than I have ever known, not because of these things, but because of the local community that is the valley’s heart and soul. I say this in the wake of my boyfriend, Will Olson’s, sudden, tragic and unexpected death, which occurred in a mountain bike race in Crested Butte, on Aug. 1.
Will’s family and I cannot thank the Vail community enough for the love and support you showed us, and Will, following his passing.
The Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, where Will worked for a decade collectively, treated every one of our guests like family, extending every generosity imaginable. In addition to providing beautiful accommodations for family and friends, they provided food and beverages for Will’s spectacular celebration of life.
Vail Resorts blew us away with their generosity and grace as well. We were able to host the celebration for Will at the beautiful Eagle’s Nest; complimentary gondola passes were made available for guests and, again, food and beverages were made available to all.
There were other gestures as well — countless acts of kindness which, woven together, wrapped us in a blanket of love and support, from Will’s home of nearly 20 years. Co-workers contributed to a Go Fund Me campaign, bartenders comped bills, neighbors offered spare rooms, writers captured his spirit, friends provided “airport” runs. It was seen to that our every need (or want) was met. Many people donated their time and talents — for slide shows, programs, photography, and video, as well as to talk with Will’s family and me, sharing their favorite stories, and telling us how Will made a difference in their lives.
It is from the very bottoms of our hearts that Will’s family and I thank each and every person with whom we crossed paths — as well as all those we didn’t — in these past few weeks. Will’s death has been devastating to us all, but the incredible love, generosity, and caring we have been shown by this community has helped make this experience slightly more bearable, and even a little beautiful.
Bonnie McDonald, Gary and Sarah Olson, Carolyn Olson, John and Jennifer Olson (and Kellen and Elias), and Fred and Caron Olson (and Freya and Forest)
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Are we seeing more bears because there are more bears on the valley floor, or because we’re all spending more time at home? It could be a bit of both.