In Memory

Evan Pearce

Evan Pearce

Wayne Evan Pearce, Jr.   - "Evan"

Born: February 25, 1961
Died: June 1, 1979 

Memories of Evan: Passionate, funny, talented, sometimes over-the-top (but in a good way),  tennis team, musician, played lead guitar at the Star assembly in 1979, character, died the day after our graduation (Utah Lake accident while swimming ashore), a large group of recent Timpview graduate at his funeral,  Liz Boyack singing "Stairway to Heaven" at his funeral, ...trajecic death so young for someone we all loved and adored.

We miss you Evan. 

Evan (in classic white tshirt, Levis and fry boots), playing lead guitar at the 1979 Stars assembly. The band included (left to right): Bryan Chapman (keyboards), Ed Kocherhans (guitar and lead vocals), Brett Burr (drums), Evan Pearce (lead guitar) and Mark Reveal (bass).  Playing "Never Been Any Reason" by Head East.
Buried at East Lawn Cemetery, Provo, Utah
Evan in Kindergarten

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02/19/09 06:41 AM #1    

Bryan Chapman

I remember attending his funeral so shortly after graduation. What a sad and tragic thing. There were so many people there to pay tribute.

I had the great opportunity to get to really know Evan. He was in my kindergarten class at Wasatch elementary school and we were in many classes together all the way from elementary, through Farrer and through high school. We played in a band (that never had a name by the way). I enjoyed his unique style of humor. He was a great friend!

03/01/09 12:03 AM #2    

Lance Robinson

It's interesting that there aren't many comments about Evan because I know that half the class probably has a story or two (or twenty) to share about him. Its still hard to think of him without feeling the sadness that I think many of us felt 30 years ago when he died right after graduation. But I think he'd enjoy knowing that others had some good times with him so here goes;

I remember in 9th grade Evan, Randall Beall, myself John Birch (PHS) and I where taking a class from Mr. Goodman called Music Appreciation, and yes with that group the class was a circus!

I think all of us took the class because we thought it would be easy, and wouldn't require us to learn an instrument. Mr. Goodman had other ideas for us. Within a few weeks he had brought orchestra instruments to class and was trying to teach us all how to play violin, bass etc., which was the last thing in the world we wanted to do.

Despite Mr.Goodman's best efforts, we ended up messing around for most of the semester, with Randall singing and carrying on and Evan making the class laugh with his running commentary.

With about two weeks to go in the semester Mr. Goodman announces one day that our class was going to play in the upcoming orchestra concert, and if we don't show up we'll be docked two letter grades. So we show up on the night of the concert not really having a clue what we were going to do.

As the time for our group to play draws closer, we start to talk among ourselves and realized that we had no clue how to play the violin. None! We simply couldn't do it. As we're getting ready to play, we're all scared and embarrassed and we turn to each other and say "what should we do" and Evan turns to us and blurts out "just fake it man, just fake it". So for the next 5 or 6 minutes that's exactly what we did. We fake every note, all the while pretending like we're as good as the world famous orchestra players who faked it during President's Obama's Presidential swearing in.

When Pearce and I saw each other after that we'd pretend like we were playing the violin. Evan, you always made me laugh, and you still do. Thank you.

03/12/09 07:37 AM #3    

Brad Winterton

Lance is right. I can think of a dozen or more memories of Evan. Like him spending most of the semester in Mr Merrill's 7th grade Crafts class talking to Lori Pinder (I remember wishing I knew how to talk to a girl...), or Mr Carlisle in Math always having to ask him to stop talking (he kept the rest of the class laughing most of the time with his antics). I also remember coming home from a river trip (we left a couple of days ofter graduation) to learn of his death, and then attending his funeral where it seemed the entire school was also in attendance. That was quite a statement about the number of people who considered Evan a friend.

03/22/09 05:20 PM #4    

Carolee Wilkinson (Adams)

Evan used to be in my Sunday school class. He was about 12 years old at the time and was always clowning around and making everyone laugh. There were about 9 boys and 3 girls in the class. We had an elderly woman teaching us and one day she got so fed up with Evan that she walked up to Evan's chair and with her pointed-toe shoes kicked him right in the shin. He looked at her in a state of shock and tried to hold back the laughter. The teacher left the room and basically Evan took over from there. Crazy guy! It was never boring when Evan was around.

05/11/09 12:08 AM #5    

David Harris

Evan accompanied several of us on some of our many excursions downtown while we were all attending Farrer Jr. High. I have a vivid memory of standing in a record shop with him, showing him a Stephen Stills solo album and trying to convince him he should buy it. Evan was a Stones fan through and through, so we stood there for a while, debating the merits of each band's music. Who was the better guitarist? Stills or Keith Richards? Which band wrote better songs? Finally, Evan nodded his head and said "I guess Stills is pretty decent". I felt like I had won a prize or something. It cracks me up now to think of those two 12-year-old kids having such a serious conversation about music.

Years later, Evan was riding shotgun in my Camaro and we were headed up the hill to his house. Someone in another car was badgering us or throwing stuff at us or something. I don't remember anymore. Suddenly Evan produces a small metal object and asks if he should hurl it out the window at the other car. I had no idea what it was, so I shrugged and said sure. A day or two later, I noticed that the release handle to adjust the forward and backward positioning of the passenger seat was missing. That's what Evan had held up to show me. I cursed him silently and vowed to ask more questions before okaying such an action in the future.

The main thing I remember about Evan now is how full of life he was. Some people spend years and years mastering the art of living in the moment, the art of "Be here now" to paraphrase a Steely Dan song. But Evan didn't need to be taught this skill. He possessed it naturally. There may have been times when you wanted to kill him, but mostly he inspired laughter and good times. I enjoyed hanging out with him, and I'm grateful for the memories.

06/01/09 12:55 PM #6    

Margaret MacCabe (Ritchie)

Evan was great and had a lot of personality! I think he flirted with almost every girl...I was shocked when he asked me out because he was a little on the wild side, and I was pretty square so I thought that I definitely was not his type. We had a very nice time, however, and I remember being impressed at what a gentlemen he actually was! I think he lived life to the fullest for the amount of time that he was here, and was successful in many ways.

07/05/09 11:02 AM #7    

Lynette West (Jensen)

I had left for Basic Training with the Army National Guard right after High School and didn't hear of Evan's death until after the funeral. It was such a surprise and took ma little while to even believe. I had known Evan since Farrer days when I had such a crush on him - as so many girls did! He was tall, dark, handsome...with a definite air of danger mixed with humor which was so attractive at the time. I wonder what he's like now? Guess that reunion update will have to wait a while longer. See you then, Evan.

09/13/13 03:21 PM #8    

Buff Williams

Where do I begin, and how do I fairly describe one of the funniest people, and most talented tennis players that I have ever known..  I will try very hard to share a couple of the things I loved about Evan.

I first met Evan at the tennis courts where I literally lived most of my junior high and high school yrs..  I was at BYU outdoor courts, the champoinship courts,  number 2.  There was Evan, 6'2" tall, thin and hitting the tennis ball harder than I had ever seen any person, ever, that I have ever watched.  I was sure he played for BYU but we were both only freshman ready to begin our sophamore yr at Provo High.

He was totally holding his own and taking games off the number one singles player at BYU.  When I found out he was my age I was in shock.  This sport called tennis I was in love with and wanted to play it like Evan, but knew deep in my soul, YOU had to be born with that kind of insane talent, and Evan had it.  Raw unadulterated explosive power and finesse all rolled into one.  I found out later he was ranked 8th in the nation at 12 or 14 yrs old.  Then didn't play in any major tournaments for 2-4 yrs, and at 16 yrs old was still ranked 14 or 16th in the nation, with no one seeing him even play for quite a while!  He never acted as if he was special, or that he was this crazy tennis player that he was!!  And trust me he was....

I loved watching Evan play.  If he was even going to practice I would offer a ride or tag along and watch.. Again and again I would drive or go watch and He was the finest young player I had ever seen. Even those on TV.   Evan had such a diverse personality.  Friends in EVRY culture or group or clan of every kind, at our high school.  He shaved more than my dad, and really looked like a adult in almost every way........  He would over sleep and Steve and  would wake him up, and drag him out of bed!  He was sooo mad at us for harrassing him in the mornings.  We would sometimes sneak in and scare the crap out of him and then run away before he started swinging!  We had a blast!  He was so funny, and pickiy about his hair(I 'm one to talk :-) ) but his hair had to be just right and just perfect or he would keep combing and spraying and combing and then run his hands through it 5-10 times, then comb his mustache very carefully, and then we could go..  Steve and I would make fun of him and handle it the whole time he got ready, just to try to annoy him. He was so funny and serious about his looks.  But when he finally left the house, he never thought about it much anymore, unless there were girls, he just looked for ways to make others laugh, and boy, laugh we did... It is still so etched into my mind, how slapstick and unique his humor was.  Truly one of a kind stuff.  NOBODY could do it like Evan, Steve and I still tried to be just like our friend Evan, but we were not even close.  Ironically, Steve and I still do handles on the phone and try not to let the memory of Evan fade..  We loved that goof ball!!  He was a complete nut job!! And I for one miss him a lot!!

He was so funny and goofy and bored with regular life and would make fun of everything in a way, well, in a way I think everyone would agree, made Evan, ONE OF A KIND. He was bright and actually quite a deep thinker at times, thanks to Kelly Glassett, his next door neighbor, with an IQ of about 140 I think.  Kelly would make us think, whenever he was around, I don't know what happened to Kelly!! Anyway, Evan would do something that he made up and called "a handle".  A handle is when you act retarted and act out something for a while to make others laugh or make them uncomfortable, or make them think you were a special needs kid etc.  and then you go right back to normal as though nothing happen.  OMGosh it was so fun, and so funny to watch! Passer by's who had no idea what to think of Evan.

I remember falling to the ground with laughter on seriously more than 100 occasions, with Steve Sperry and I and Evan.  Just out goofing off.  Sometimes having to stop the car to keep from crashing because we were all laughing so hard.

Evan would almost daily, PUT US ON THE FLOOR!!!  Seriously on the floor laughing our guts out..!

He had about 5 personalities living inside him.  The serious side. Tennis.The serious side. Girls.  The serious side when he would try to learn new things, or, The jokster in class or in a croud.  And last, The jokster in small private groups with his closest friends where he would actually practice and expand and perfect his talents and gags..  

Evan invented 2-3 dozen words, most I can remember and are burned into my mind, with a smile..

one of my fondest memories of Evan's shear talent in tennis was this.  

We went to play a bigtime high school in Salt Lake.  Evan was our 1st singles player for the team.  Supposed to be.

Evan told coach he wasnt going, and the Coach approached Steve and I to try and convince Evan to go.  So We did.  Evan slept the whole way up, in the bus or the car, I can't remember.  Evan was bare foot, uhuh, barefoot, and had no shirt, tennis racket, nor money or any anything for that matter.

When we arrived, as my memory serves me, Steve had to loan Evan his shoes and a shirt, and I loaned him a tennis racket.  And he walked out on the court that way, where he was to play 1st singles for our high school..  Already There was a well groomed and well liked (by the fans there) Young man for the other team, he was their 1st singles who would play Evan, I think for the State semi finals.  The other kids parents had a Rolls Royce.  He had approximately 7 rackets and had 50-100 fans there, and was expecting to win pretty easily.  We hadn't seen Evan play I don't think, no one had for a couple of yrs. and Evan hadn't played any tennis for about a month...  The match began.  Evan and this other player hit a couple of volleys.  Then Evan took a couple of serves.  Then Evan said, "You ready"?  The young man and his friends kind of chuckled and then answered, "Sure!"   Evan won the toss or spin and it was Evan's Serve.  Evan said, "This serve will count" through the ball in the air, smashed it, and aced him.  And Then again.

This other player hit the ball so little I was actually starting to feel sorry for the other embarrased player with the 100 fans and 7 rackets and his parents clearly spent so much money for him to win...  But he was losing, and losing bad!!.  

Evan beat him 6-0 6-1 6-3  After that, Evan came over and sat down.  Asked if anyone had any food, drink or any money.  We gave him some.  For some reason Steve and I always took care of him, and always gave him what ever he needed.  He then gave back steve's shirt and shoes so Steve could play, and gave me back my extra racket and it was as if nothing had happened, good or bad.   I was flabbergasted, but mostly amazed by his natural and unmistakable talent that we all recognize, when we see it.  It was unreal and I was blown away.  So was everyone else.  He was so so so talented.   I love and miss him very much!  I think my real love for tennis came from watching someone my own age play like that..  When he was gone, my love for tennis kind of went with Evan.  You see he was TENNIS in my mind, and without him, I wasn't sure I wanted to play anymore..  At least it would be the same without him.  I am sure he is playing tennis right now up there on a cloud, calling a serve OUT when it was really in,  and then saying, "Just Kidding"!!

I am sure, like so many have said already, there are endless stories about our friend Evan...  Please share them here....

06/02/24 03:23 PM #9    

Kevin Gull

Odd that today after 45 years + 1 day that there's an email in my In Box alerting me of an update to our THS '79 Page and then after going through the site I'm linked to Evan's page because of an old dance pic it's linked to.

I don't talked too much about the day of Evan's passing - you see he was supposed to be with us -- Ron Baird, Greg Heiner, Brian Campbell and I on our Senior Trip -- and there were some very spiritual things that happened the afternoon of Evan's passing which especially Brian and I noticed but we didnt share with one another until my Mom called our hotel later that night to let us know what had happened to Evan. Brian and I then shared our experience as to what happened earlier that afternoon just outside of St. George. I'm fine to share the details - but would prefer to do so in person, especially with the personal + spiritual nature of these events. As many of Evan's will attest - he's been greatly missed.
And now as time has marched on and we've lost other classmates + dear friends -- it does remind me how wonderful of a bubble we lived in growing up in Provo at that time - but we sure didn't know any better and how incredibly blessed we were. In fact, Evan's probably up there today with Brian Campbell, Randall Beal + others having great laughs reminiscing our old stories + trying to tell us what doesn't matter, but more importantly --what really does matter.
God Bless + GLH! 🤘🏽  




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