Letter from Emily Scott to the Segals


Dear Mr. and Mrs. Segal,

I have sat down to write this letter several times. However, I have never been able to express to you my feelings about Anton in a way that I felt was good enough. But I decided as I was sitting on the train returning to Philadelphia from Boston that I wanted you to know my feelings regardless of in what form I could express them.

I met Anton in the summer of 1997 in Egypt. I was 15 and on a trip with Broadreach. The minute I met Anton, I always wanted to be near him or to talk to him. He made each day brighter, funnier and more enjoyable. What I admired so much about him was his genuine ability to make you feel good about yourself, that you were his favorite. I was the youngest of the group, yet Anton treated me like everyone else, as an equal.

I will never forget how excited I was when I found out that Anton was coming with us on our desert safari. The mere idea that Anton would want to spend time with us outside of the dive club made everyone feel on top of the world. Although we had two Land Rovers to use on our trek, ten of us piled in one car while there were only four or five in the other. I can honestly tell you that we all crowded into the one car for one reason, Anton was in it. While in any other situation we would have minded the sweltering heat or three hours lost in the middle of the desert, this was different. The car rides were my favorite part of the safari. Anton kept us laughing with outrageous stories and knew exactly what to say to keep our spirits high. I remember talking to Anton one night in the desert. We just sat talking and when I got cold he put his arm around me. I felt so special around him, like I must have done something right to have such an incredible person as a friend.

The stories go on and on. As my trip neared its end, all I wanted was just a little more time with Anton. I stayed a week longer than most of my group for a short extension. During that extension I was given the choice to either dive some new sites with a different guide, or stay with Anton and re-dive some other sites. I didn't even think twice before deciding to stay on Anton's boat. I will never forget that last week I spent in Egypt. One day I didn't dive so I didn't see Anton until that evening at dinner. To be honest, something was missing that day when I finally saw Anton come into the restaurant, I felt more at ease, like my day was complete.

Saying good-bye to Anton my last night in Sharm was probably the hardest thing I ever had to do. When Anton crossed the street to leave, I could not stop crying. I guess Anton heard me because the next thing I knew, Anton was right behind me again. He walked me all the way back to my hotel, even though it was out of the way so we could have a little more time together. It meant the world to me to know how much he cared.

I kept in touch with Anton after returning to the states. I think that the Camel staff probably thought that I was crazy with my faxes. I'd send with PLEASE GIVE TO ANTON SEGAL printed in bold letters across the top to ensure he'd get it. I loved receiving his emails, his letters and stories were truly a gift. I had never saved any of my emails, yet I have an entire file containing every message I received from Anton.

Anton touched my life in a way that no one else ever has. My friends and family practically know him themselves because I constantly told "Anton Stories". His unique personality and brilliance made him so special. His intelligence never ceased to amaze me, and his ability to put life into perspective taught me lessons that I will always keep in my heart. He taught me to enjoy life in the moment, patience, and now to appreciate diving as more than just going deep. Anton embodied everything that I could dream of being. If I could achieve even a fraction of what he did I would be more than satisfied.

So those are some of my memories of Anton. I could probably go on forever, but even volumes could not truly express my admiration and love for your son. When I am more clear headed and some emotion from this weekend calm a bit, I will try to write a story for the website. In the meantime, I send my love and best wishes to you and your entire family. Your strength and courage is incredible, and I only wish that I had had the chance to really get to know you. I will send a story soon, but I wanted to let you know now how much I really loved Anton, and will miss him more that words could ever express. It was a pleasure to meet you both, and thank you again for everything this weekend.

All my love,

Emily Scott