The most Influential people in your life during high school... are your FRIENDS! I am blessed to have extremely amazing friends! Most of them have been with me, since the 8th grade but others i've had since pre-school. I remember meeting most of my best buds, all in one year at football practice. That year of football was the most enjoyable season of my life! Unfortunately, we didn't win one single game that year, but my new friends and I didn't care. We just loved playing the game and being together. It never mattered what we were doing, we always just had tons of fun. After that season, my dad bought me a football plague. That plague has sat on my dresser for the last 5 years. It reads...."football buddies are the best kind, no one messes with a buddy of mine." I read it everyday! I would do ANYTHING for my friends. Through those friends, I met some really amazing girls. They are also very important to me. Some of my fondest memories, are the ones of us in Courtney Shaeffer's backyard playing volleyball, making s'mores, playing basketball and just having a good time. I know in my heart, that i have the greatest friends on earth. They have helped me progress into the person i wanted to be and the one i am today. Some teenagers, aren't as lucky as I was. I have seen many great people, fall off the path because they hung around the wrong crowd. For those of you that are going into high school this year, choosing the right friends to hang around is the most important decision you will make. Good friends will build you up spiritually, I KNOW IT!! If I hadn't had, the friends I did, I would not be standing here giving you this talk today. My choice was easy, but its not that way for everyone. Do not fall off the path because you didn't choose the right friends!!!! I'm so grateful that most of my friends have made the decision to serve a full-time mission. Some of their calls include, Albuquerque-New Mexico, Oslo-Norway, Birmingham-Alabama, Brisbane-Australia and Naga-Philippines... just to name a few. Those same friends, have influenced me to leave on a mission of my own. I leave for Melbourne-Australia on July 31st. I know that these missions are the most important thing for us to do right now. Thanks to my friends, I am worthy to leave on a mission. There has never been an instance with my friends, where I questioned, if what we were doing, was the righteous thing to do. It always was! We chose the right!! I know that my friends have made me into the person I am today and I love them all so much. I would do anything for them and I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
-A talk given by Coop in 2013-