Friend remembers Elizabeth Salgado’s kindness

May 24, 2018, 6:35 PM | Updated: 11:44 pm

PROVO, Utah – A friend of Elizabeth Salgado’s said he will always remember her as a person with a heart of gold.

Mackey Smith said he met Salgado through church. Salgado had just moved from Mexico to Provo and lived in the same apartment complex as Smith.

“I was grateful enough to have learned Spanish doing a church mission and so we formed a friendship,” Smith said. “She just had a heart full of gold. I could tell right from meeting her.”

Smith and Salgado were friends for the next couple of weeks. He said he got a sense of her character when they went to a church picnic together.

“When we were driving, she just kept feeling bad and guilty that she didn’t have food to bring to everybody. That’s just the kind of person she was. She didn’t know anyone, but she still wanted to provide and to feed them,” Smith said.

Salgado disappeared shortly after Smith met her. As months turned into years with no sign of her whereabouts, Smith said he started to believe he wouldn’t see her again.

“You know, I hate to admit it, but I got to a point where I kind of lost hope and I’m facing the music that I’ll probably not see her again, but then I would connect with her family and they always kept hope,” he said.

A friend texted him the news that Salgado’s remains had been found Wednesday night. He said he thought he had already moved past the grieving process, but now he feels like he’s starting over again. As he moves forward, he said, he will always remember her kind nature.

“I only knew her for a short time, but she’s still teaching me lessons from our interactions and our experience,” Smith said. “When I think of her, I just think what would she want me to do going forward, and it’s just to keep an open eye of other people that are new and maybe feel like they don’t have someone they can go to.”

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Friend remembers Elizabeth Salgado’s kindness