ROCKFORD (WREX) — This year, more than 30 people have drowned in Lake Michigan and that now includes a young man from Rockford, Moath Nagi, this past weekend.
"He was so excited to go to Porter Beach and enjoy a Sunday afternoon," Ricardo Montoya-Picazo, a friend of Nagi's, said.
In fact, Montoya-Picazo told 13 WREX, Nagi invited him to go with, something that gives him chills now.
"I hope this is a nightmare and I will wake up," Mustafa Abdall, Nagi's mentor and friend, said.
Montoya-Picazo said he and Nagi used to love to exchange funny audio messages.
"We loved to talk politics," Montoya-Picazo said with a laugh.
Nagi was also a husband and father.
"We drove about 45 cars to his wedding in Chicago, about a two hour drive," Abdall recalled.
To Abdall, Nagi was like a son.
"He was my student, he was my son, he was my volunteer for years, he was my community events photographer, he was — he was — I can't tell you what he was — he was unlimited," Abdall said.
Nagi was also known to have a tireless work ethic.
"He'd call me at night and say, 'Uncle (Nagi's name for Abdall), I'm working the night shift and I will get you it (Nagi did graphic designing for Abdall) in the morning," Abdall explained. "Then, I'd wake up at five in them morning and I found he'd already created and sent it to me."
Nagi was talented when it came it mixed-media.
"He was always creating videos for the police," Montoya-Picazo said.
And that's because Nagi aspired to be a Rockford Police officer.
"His dream was to become a police officer, to assist people, to combat crime," Montoya-Picazo said.
Abdall spoke of Nagi's dream too.
"They motivated him to dream to be one of them," Abdall said.
Moath Nagi had a future filled with endless possibilities, but he was a bright star that burned out too soon. Moath Nagi was just 21-years-old.
"He will be missed," Montoya-Picazo said.