The notes below are collected from those who Shalin influenced throughout his life
from close family and friends to near strangers from all walks of life.
Shalin taught me that everything in life is a choice. He chose to live and love life when it would be easier to just be bitter about the hand that he was dealt. He chose to spend his time uplifting others and encouraging them to pursue their dreams instead of living in wistful thought. He chose happiness and the people he loved above all else, constantly reminding them of the priceless gift of life that proves its worth no matter how long or short it lasts.
So now I chose to live everyday like Shalin: loving passionately, giving generously, and most importantly living purposefully. I will spend the rest of my life trying to understand the grace with which Shalin approaches every day and working to follow his example in everything I do.
By his character, Shalin exists in the company of friends that I aspire to be—adventurous in self, selfless with others, but otherwise relentlessly entertaining. His broader pursuits, in their unsurprising impressiveness, challenge me to likewise go far in life with my values kept close.
Shalin inspires me to be more aware of other people's situations and just see what I can do for them. Sometimes, I didn't even remember I had a cold, but Shalin would remember and he would ask me if I am okay. His kindheartness and willingness to help others is truly inspiring.
Shalin Shah you are more than just a friend. You are my brother. Meeting you in high school was one of the main reasons Troy was a great experience for me. We have always connected on our “laid back” nature and our desire to enjoy life. I can remember the countless great times that we’ve had and I cherish all of them. You brighten up any atmosphere you’re in and you are always providing “good vibes”. From the RnB we blasted, to the creative meals and drinks we invented, to the philosophical and political discussions that we’ve had, every single memory was a great one. I can honestly say there is not one single time since the day we met that we haven’t gotten along perfectly. You’ve always inspired me with how intelligent, caring, passionate, positive and strong you are. I am incredibly grateful that I met you, because you’ve had an amazing impact on my life. You know you will always be my brother. I LOVE YOU BRO!
You are one of the best friends I have ever had and have always been a constant in my life. Your positive outlook on life helps me envision a brighter future for myself. I will look back on all of the amazing memories we’ve shared and be thankful that you were a part of them.
My first memory of Shalin was when he asked Frances to a dance on stage at Troy High School’s Battle of the Bands. Even though I didn’t technically meet Shalin that night, it was the first time I met Tuan, so that day will always have a special place in my heart. I got to know Shalin more at USC where I found out that not only are frozen peas straight from the bag a great snack, but that he’s also an incredibly genuine, exciting, hilarious, and kind person. In the past year, when things got really tough, I’ve found that all of these traits hold true, if not more true, and I am so lucky to have known such an incredible, strong, courageous, and inspiring human being.
What impresses me the most is your driving need to draw out the world for yourself through experience rather than allow blind confidence in your own opinions or the opinions of others color it for you. In doing so, you have seen more, done more, and lived more than most of the men and women you share this world with.
I have much admiration and respect for Shalin. From stunning us all at our high school talent show to joining the Peace Corps, he embodied an attitude of trying new things, pushing oneself and taking risks. And he did it all in such low-key fashion, always remaining genuine and humble. I have learned from both his actions and his character--and they will continue to influence me.
To my dearest friend Shalin,Man, how can I put how much you mean to me into words. Our friendship has just blossomed, yet I feel like I have known you my entire life. I can't say I've connected to many people on this planet how I've connected to you. Your positivity, creativity, and unconditional love for life has inspired me in so many ways. I have a specific note in my phone called Shalin's Wisdom, where I just horde all the gems and insights I get from you. You truly are an amazing individual.I've taken away so much from our conversations. I want to see the world with your eyes: how you appreciate the colors of the Jacaranda trees and the the beauty of Dolce Gabbana commercials. I want to dream how you dream: how you concoct brilliant business ideas of creating the ultimate sensory experience, how you believe in a world where people can connect through conversation and experiences. Above all, I want to love how you love. Your love for Frances is immaculate. If I can ever love Shalini the way you love Frances, I have done my job as a boyfriend and future husband. Your love is so pure, I can only smile and look on. Thank you so much for showing me what it takes to be a real man.But as days pass, I just want you to know that I'll always remember you, always think of you. Our spirits will be connected and from time to time, I'll reach out to you, see what you're up to, so make sure you reach back! I promise that I will do anything to make sure Frances lives a full, happy life and I'll do everything in my power to look out for her. Your love is beautiful and inspiring and I'll take her in as a sister. Thank you so much for entering my life and showing me the way it should be lived. Always, your brother - Ankit
'A day after meeting my oncologist for the first time I was lucky to hang out with Shalin and some high school buddies on a much needed chill Saturday. Monkeying around the jungle gym in Fullerton, Shalin and I curiously discussed the design of the playground and the nuances that resembled the park near our high school. With cancer looming over my shoulder, Shalin helped me forget my worries as we instead realized our potential as future playground designers.'
Shalin has an aura of influence that makes people around him the happier, kinder, and more optimistic versions of themselves. He doesn't preach or try to convince, he simply shows you an impressionistic reflection of your better self.
Life is like a watch with an automatic movement that you never have to wind up or replace batteries in. Whether you stop to appreciate the intricacies of the beautiful self-winding mechanisms or not, an automatic watch will continue to operate. Shalin taught me to not only be concerned with the endgame or in this case looking at the time, but to appreciate the movement of the cogs behind the watch face that drive the watch. Shalin allowed me to realize that you’re not truly living life if you don’t stop to appreciate the details that make life so worth living. This is who Shalin is—a watch aficionado whose appreciation for the small things in life is so infectious.
I didn't have the pleasure of knowing Shalin well, but all my interactions with him were fond memories. During a performance, I was not able to wear my character costume due to my body condition. Without prior experience, Shalin stepped up to the plate, got in the character suit, and helped make the production a success. When people needbvn help, he is always the first to volunteer. When others are down, his smiles beam them up. Despite the situation, he always carries a positive attitude. He is a constant reminder to me that nothing bleak is without hope. A true inspiration.
Carrie Hessler-Radelet (Director, Peace Corps)
I have known Shalin for only 3 weeks, as I met him when I went to the UCLA Medical Center to swear him in as a Peace Corps Volunteer. But I can safely say that Shalin is one of the most courageous, purpose-driven, fully alive people I have ever met. Despite his rapidly deteriorating medical condition, Shalin's thoughts were firmly fixed on those he loved -- his family; his beautiful (soon to be wife) Frances; his fellow Peace Corps Volunteers and the people of Peru. Shalin had no time for remorse about his condition. Rather he focused on encouraging others to live passionately their dreams; to love unabashedly and serve without expectation. I am humbled by his courage and inspired by his commitment to making a difference. He makes me want to be a better person. What an honor it is to call Shalin a friend and fellow Peace Corps Volunteer. I am confident that his legacy of love will outlive us all.
Parmer Heacox (Peace Corps - Peru Country Director)
We were all saddened when we found out that Shalin was not going to be able to stay in Peru and complete his service. During his brief time with us at PST, he demonstrated empathy, good friendship, and a spirit of service; all characteristics of a strong Peace Corps Volunteer. Months later after he has left the Peace Corps, he continues to demonstrate these characteristics from afar. He has touched many lives and we know he will continue to do so. Thank you Shalin. You are a role model we all can emúlate. Best wishes from Parmer!
Michael Kowalick (Volunteer Coordinator)
Shalin has shown me just how much one individual can give in spite of his own challenges. When giving time, spirit, and love to others comes as your top priority, nothing can hold you back and I’ve been so incredibly humbled by the never-ending support, counsel, and comradery Shalin has shown to our volunteers even as he has confronted his most difficult times. Our volunteers, our Peru post, and efforts are infinitely better because of Shalin’s contribution and we will be forever grateful to consider him a friend.
Marcelo Andrade (Peru 23)
Shalin has inspired me. He taught me so much about dedication to people and being unashamed of his love and devotion to people. When I have hard days here in the Peace Corps, I think back to all of the good times we had together and he energizes me to continue working hard. I remember being in a rural beach town in Peru looking at the amazing stars in the sky and he was in awe of the grandeur and beauty of the stars. Its something that I wouldn't have paid much attention to. But now, every time I look at starry night skies I think of Shalin and remember to appreciate the natural beauty in the world around us.
Alejandra Garcia (Peru 23)
Shalin left me very humbled. During Pre-Service Training, his high spirited attitude, lack of ego, and authentic nature was something that left me in awe as I watched him give presentations, interact with volunteers and the community. Often when arriving into a foreign country as volunteers we question what we are doing here, during our time together with Shalin in training, he was someone that served me, as that reminder of all that is kind and giving, and our need to contribute. I am very thankful for him.
Adrienne Peck (Peru 23)
I also think the world of Shalin. I met Shalin during Pre-service training for the Peace Corps in Peru. We are both part of the Community Economic Development program. The first interaction I remember having with Shalin is when he sang for us all. We were sitting in a circle and he starting busting out some Usher and I think all of our hearts just melted, girls and guys alike :). In the short time we spent together at training, I learned a lot from Shalin. We spent probably one of my favorite days of training together. Shalin had organized a group to visit a temple nearby to where we all were staying. I had gotten bit early that morning by a dog (joining Shalin in the now club of 2) and almost didn't go. We spent the afternoon sipping tea in the garden and playing cards in the grass. After we went to a friends house and for a carving lesson where a few of us made incense holders. When saying out loud how I wished I had bought some earlier at the temple, Shalin offered to go back the next day and pick it up for me. I know it might not seem like a huge deal, but to me it really meant a lot and experiencing his true genuineness and sincerity is something I will always remember and love about Shalin.
Another things I love about Shalin is how he isn't afraid to be different. My favorite example of this is when we were forming a community savings club with our group to learn how to replicate it in our communities. We all had to contribute a designated amount every week to the box and in the end we received our savings. We started going through the list one by one and when we got to Shalin's name, towards the end, he just told us how he was going to sit this one out. The thought hadn't occurred to any of us that we would be able to do that so we were all shocked when he said it! I just smiled because as we were all following the crowd, Shalin was not afraid to make his own decisions and be unique. What an incredible quality this is!
Shalin is an incredible individual that shares his passions openly, and makes the world a better place for those around him. He is the definition of authentic. I am so happy that I got to know this amazing guys and honored to call him my friend.
Craig Martin Chavis (Peru 23)
Shalin was definitely one of my top aces during our Peace Corps training. Whether or not we were eating fried chicken, having a jam session, or simply talking about life - Shalin always made the time pass by in a joyful manner. I do not have a single bad memory of him. He definitely goes down as one of the realest, most genuine, and kindest people I have encountered in my life to date.
Ashley Bowen (Peru 23)
Shalin is the strongest member of the Peru 23 group. He is also the only one who is serving outside of Peru. Shalins' Peace Corps service began in June of 2014 and continues to this day. Although I'm positive that his service is reaching others, I can only speak for Peru 23; he is the rock that holds us to our commitment, he is the voice that tells us to keep going, he is the smile that we see when we are frowning. We were with him for such a short time, but his impact has multiplied with each day. We joined the Peace Corps to help others, to impact lives, to leave a lasting impression; no one has done this as thoroughly and gracefully as Shalin.
Laura Smith (Peru 23)
Shalin's positive energy and relentlessness ability to see the bright side even when things look bleak gives me strength to push on even when times are hard. Additionally, he is one of the funnest people I know: making the mundane fun through good questions, great stories, and laughter.
Alicia Williamson (Peru 23)
My host family in Picsi was originally the Shalin's family. They still to this day ask about him and consider him a brother from the United States. When I told my host mother that Shalin married the love of his life, her eyes teared up. He continues to touch the lives of those who he knew for a very short time.
Paula Jimenez (Peru 23)
When I think of how Shalin has influenced my life many words come to mind. Most importantly it is his positive attitude towards any adversity that has really made a difference to me. Since day one, he’s been a source of inspiration. With kind hellos and a smile that could light up a room; Shalin always radiates good energy. My favorite times with Shalin always involved him singing Usher songs, listening to his funny stories, or just being Shalin. Even after leaving Peru he continued to inspire and support us, it’s like he never left; he’s our reminder of strength when times get tough. He has taught us more than he could ever know and for that we are forever grateful.
Hector J. Jimenez (Peru 23)
During our Peace Corps Volunteer training Shalin, and a small group of us had to create a fictitious “tappertastic” business (a washing Tupperware idea). I tend to overthink things and this non successful business idea was not any different (thank God, because none of us wanted to wash a single dish and hiring cheap labor from the street or throwing away the Tupperware was unethical and didn’t make too much business sense). As I was stressing out for God knows what, I remember Shalin just smiling with his “nuh man s’all good attitude”. Today I continue to see that same smile as Shalin faces a difficult situation and it makes me think that regardless of what we go through we can’t give up, and that we have to see things in the best way possible, at the end everything “is all good man.”
Hector & Paula Jimenez (Peru 23)
We will always be grateful for the great life lesson you have taught us through your experience. We tend to waste our life in frivolities and create our own sense of reality and priorities based on materialistic and senseless stuff and base our happiness or sorrow on that. During difficult times it’s easy for us to drown ourselves without realizing how ungrateful we are and how much we do not appreciate the little things and time we are lent while here on earth. Your story is something we will cherish for the rest of our lives. Through your pictures and the little we know about what is happening you have taught us the definition of love. You two are unique souls and please know that God or however you might refer to your “superior being” didn’t put the two of you together by coincidence or for no reason. Through you, any of us who have the honor of knowing you have received a great message, of courage, love and compassion. At this point all what is left for us to say is thank you, and believe me we will meet again soon. Until then we will be missing you. We love you both and will continue to have you on our prayers and our hearts.
Tiffany Jimenez (Peru 23)
What I have to say is that Shalin is the most caring and happiest person I know. I have so many good stories to share about Shalin but my favorite is when he spent hours making a piñata for his little host sister of her favorite character Peppa the pig, he didn't have much so he made it with a box and paper. Me and the little girls mom laughed so much because it was a strange looking pig, but that little girl loved it! And we loved it too. During that time Shalin use to get tired often so we knew the effort it took him to do it, but this didn't stop him from making a little girl very happy.
Roxanne Stehlik (Peru 23)
Your joy in the midst of everything, your unrelenting care for others, peace with the future, and love of all good things is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life. You, just you being you, remind me to enjoy every moment and do it with passion and conviction no matter what. Thank you!!
Rissy Dolente (Peru 23)
When it comes to Shalin I'm not sure where to start. From the moment I met him he's inspired me in many ways. He was never afraid to be a rebel or rock the boat. He found humor in every situation including when he got bit by a dog his first day in training. He always helped me see situations from a new and interesting perspective. Lately he's inspired me to be humble and appreciate my happiness. So much that I've been making surprising life decisions and choices. He's taught me to take risks and to never have regrets. To be honest I've never been happier and I owe that all to Shalin. He'll forever be alive in my mind, heart and soul.
While words alone can never encompass the nature of Shalin, I can provide a short example of how Shalin touched another life. He is one-of-kind. While we both interned at Disney, I asked him about his charity work on skid row in Los Angeles, where thousands of people struggle to survive while surrounded by some of the most wealthy in the world. Shalin worked hard to help those people carry this burden. But his charity did not only take form in this type of organized structure. He would always laugh with me, even if my jokes were likely not deserved, a form of charity I'll never forget.
I remember Shalin’s enthusiasm for Disneyland and how excited he was to work for the “Happiest Place on Earth”. His positive attitude is what drove me to request that he be hired on my team; everyone who applied had the accounting/finance background, but there are other intangibles that we look for when bringing in someone for a team. Although I moved from the team a couple of months later Shalin and I stayed in touch and I was flattered when he asked me to “sponsor” him for the Peace Corps. I knew he would bring that same positive attitude and make a difference to those he met. Take care Shalin.
In my interactions with Shalin I came to know him as smart, humorous, inquisitive, optimistic, and, most importantly, a good person. He is just the type of guy you know has good in him. Although more vague now with time, I have memories of talks with Shalin ranging from just about everything... school, the internship/work, future aspirations, and you (Frances). Shalin was such a calming presence, laid back in a good way. To me, he was a sort of a "go with the flow" type person. In fact, he was so laid back he would often catch a quick snooze in his cubicle, as his team often left him with little to do. His cubicle mirrored his carefree attitude in appearance as well. The walls of Shalin's cubicle were lined (wall-to-wall) with pictures from various Disney movies he liked, he had stacks of paperwork covering every inch of his desk, and he had amassed a collection of pins and anything else Disney had given away for free. It was a sight. =)
Bill Fold (cofounder of Goldenvoice, Coachella & Stagecoach)
its very hard to find the right place to start. i am full of anger, sympathy and joy. mostly joy as i really think about it. to meet such an incredible person only once and feel like i have known him forever is a gift. to see his strength to live when knowing the end is so near makes me feel unappreciative of the ease at which i am able to live. i will remember Shalin everyday by reminding myself “its never too late”! he will forever be in my thoughts as the kid with a huge smile and 2 middle fingers up while staring at death. I’m not sure i have ever had an actual hero. but, i do now…. Frances. no words can properly describe who she is or what she has done. she is my hero! Thank you Shalin & Frances.
Black Eyed Peas Manager
Shalin is an incredible soul! When I first met him at Coachella, I instantly felt his warmth, love and passion for the music as he was just having a great time. His smile was ear to ear and his energy was contagious. As production work is never a walk in the park, he managed to put a smile on my face and I was happy we could share in the moments together.
Harry Hudson (met you two in catering)
Shalin, I just wanted to say you are and will always be an inspiration, not only to me but the universe. I have never known someone as positive and as strong as you, you are truly a real superhero. I promise your legacy will never go unnoticed. Your message and strength will inspire this world to live life to the fullest with no regrets, to keep following their dreams, and pursue true happiness. Thank you Shalin for sharing your life and story with us. It will forever live on. Sending so much Love to you, your wife and your family. ️
Charlene Codella (Outdoor Theatre Stage Liaison)
First weekend of Coachella 2015 is officially over & my fondest memory is not that of a celeb sighting or my fav performance, but that of meeting a couple who changed my life and reminded me what it is really all about. Coachella went out of their way to ensure that a young man who was given less than 6 months to live was able to enjoy the dream of his life...this dream being one that I live on a daily basis and at most times unknowingly take for granted. To witness first hand & to be able to help facilitate in the joy they experienced being onstage with their favorite performing artist while all along knowing this will be the last time they will ever have that chance to experience Coachella together was truly and ALWAYS will be the most memorable moment I will have working in the music industry. And to Goldenvoice...big props to you for taking care of this strong, adorable, admirable couple the way you did and for remembering what really matters the most in life beyond the festival gates.
To those of you heading to Coachella Weekend 2; please take time to "smell the roses" while there & think of this couple when you want to complain about how hot it is or that the line is too long and your feet hurt to walk..
David West (Outdoor Theatre Production Manager)
During the brief meetings I had with you at Coachella it was evident how courageous and strong you are.
I feel honored to have met you!. It is very evident you are enjoying all that life allows us, regardless of circumstance. Fearless, Kind. Honorable.
Westy & the Outdoor Theatre team!
Wiley Dailey (Sahara Tent Production Manager)
It was an extreme pleasure to invite Shalin & Frances onto my stage which is known to my company as Wiley World. It was an extreme pleasure every night to bring them onstage and have him sit next to the DJs that they loved ... I whispered in every DJs ear to let them know the gentleman sitting on the stage was their biggest fan in the world!! I don't cry very much ... put tears in my eyes to see how happy they were.
black-eyed peas and david guetta thought he was a super righteous dude!!
Catherine Wirtz (Gobi Stage Liaison)
"I had the pleasure of meeting Shalin and Frances when they visited the Gobi stage to watch Gorgon City. Right when they arrived, they immediately greeted me with big smiles and gratitude; I was struck instantly with how genuine and welcoming both of them were. After watching some of the show, we talked a bit about their favorite acts of the day and connected over their excitement of being at Coachella together. Shalin radiated positivity--as we walked away from the stage and were about to say goodbye, Shalin asked me for a hug to thank me for escorting them on stage and letting them watch the show. I was more than obliged! Shalin showed so much gratitude for being there; I was truly touched that for a brief moment I could contribute to this incredible couple’s Coachella experience. Despite all the bands and popular artists I saw at Coachella this year, meeting Shalin and Frances was by far the highlight of the festival for me and will be for years to come.
Shalin and Frances-- I am so grateful I had the opportunity to contribute, small as it may be, to your Coachella experience! You both influenced me with your positivity, strength, and gratitude and I will always remember that. Thank you for your spirit, I wish you both the best!
Shannon Boschee (Credentials Manager)
Frances & Shalin – I am so happy that I was able to credential you at Indian Wells Tennis Garden. You lit up my day with joy and excitement. I hope I did the same for you. You are both amazing people and I am very lucky to have met you both. Keep shining and stay strong.
Mandy (Safari Camping)
Shalin brightened up the Safari campground for everyone he crossed paths with! His smile was contagious and his pure excitement, infectious. The Safari staff spoke often of how genuinely thrilled they were to hear about Shalin and Frances' daily adventures (getting pictures with the Black Eyes Peas, being on stage, just having a blast together! and more!). Having met and seen the love Shalin and Frances have for each other will forever hold a special place in my heart.
Aaron (Safari Camping)
Shalin, It was all my privilege and pleasure getting to meet you.
Your continued love for life is inspiring to me.
Brett (Safari Camping)
Shalin I want you to know what an inspiration and total blessing you have been to me without even knowing it. I will keep you in my heart and dreams forever knowing you have inspired so many people around you within such little time. I hope you the best and wish I could be there to see you play that ACDC inflatable guitar from bed! Best Wishes and Rock On!!
Kristen (Safari Camping)
To Shalin: Meeting you and Frances was the highlight of my first ever Coachella. It was backstage right after you met The Black Eyed Peas, I'll never forget that moment. In the brief time we spoke, your positivity and absolute joy of life was infectious. In all of the chaos that surrounds us, you have reminded me to enjoy the moments, especially with the ones we love.
Laice (Shalin & Frances’ Safari Liaison)
Shalin showed me that life is not about how much time you have- rather what you do with the time that you do have. Attending Shalin and Frances's wedding showed me that the most important vow is "in sickness and in health". The love that he has for his wife Frances refreshes my views and shows me that true love can exist. And true love is beyond superficiality and straight down into the heart. In the short time that I have known Shalin I have looked at the world from a whole new perspective. I have been so touched and inspired by his kind soul, and in turn have been able to focus on living my life to the fullest. Shalin- despite the sickness that has struck him, is the strongest, happiest, most full of life individual I know. This goes to show that in life there is no dying. There is life and there is death- nothing in between. Shalin is living- and living life to the fullest. My life is forever touched by his soul.
Michael Botte (Safari Camping Manager)
I was humbled and honored to spend a weekend with Shalin at Coachella this year. His perseverance and passion for life was insurmountable, even in the face of such incredible challenges. I will be forever thankful to him for allowing me to see my life in a new way, and appreciate every moment of it.
Colin Robinson (Sahara Artist Liaison)
Hey Shalin, thank you so much for entering my life. It has forever improved. Few people in my life have had such a profound impact in such a brief encounter. After we all went home the first night, the thing I was looking forward to most was you and Frances coming back the second night, knowing what we had in store for you but refraining from telling you in case anything didn’t materialize, which ultimately it all did. Being a few feet away from you as you shared your wisdom with Usher and what it meant to live a meaningful life was a very special, intimate moment, that I am very fortunate to have experienced. I want you to know that I will never forget how wide your smile reached seeing you dance without a care in the world, thinking only about the moment you were living in. That was a powerful life lesson that I will attempt to recreate as often as possible, and spread with those around me. - Your friend Colin
Cole Froelich (Operations Project Manager)
Shalin, the way I watched you live your life in the desert for the first weekend of Coachella, has given me a glimpse at the blueprint of how to live and enjoy my own. Furthermore, what I witnessed from you and Frances, is that I am not here for ME, I am on this earth for others, and to be good to people, and enjoy and love people relentlessly. Shalin, if you’ve done one thing in your life, you have fast-tracked that valuable lesson for me. Frances lives off of your love and care, and you live off of hers. No matter the circumstances, this will continue as long as your stories and legacies last. The circumstances you’ve encountered have afforded you access to a higher consciousness, and a truer and more meaningful outlook on life. You’re a great teacher, by example, in showing everyone you touch just how to approach life with such fervor, passion, and willingness to love all things this world and people have to offer. I love you.
Lizzy Stadler (F&B Operations Coordinator)
Shalin, it was such a pleasure and an honor to meet both you and Frances. The highlight of my Coachella was taking you on a little food adventure in the Rose Garden. You are such a strong, courageous and beautiful human being. You will always be in my heart!