this picture was taken at 1 am July 6, 2013 at the Cuiaba Brazil AirportOur youngest son, Elder Dallen Reber finished his Mission in Chile Santiago East! He flew to Brazil! When he got to the airport, checked in, waiting at the gate to board it was discovered that he did not have a Visa to enter the Country of Brazil. Thus began retrieving luggage and calling his Mission President etc. Church Travel while making his flight plans, had forgotten about his Visa to enter Brazil. They were telling us it would be 2 weeks to go thru the paper work. Which if it were Elder Reber would probably return directly to the States. They took Elder Reber to the Embassy, in Sao Paulo, with the name of contact person to talk to. It was in hopes that he would be able to push his Visa thru. We did not know. They gave him lots of paper work to fill out and said if they had it by 1 pm that day he could pick up his Visa on Friday. This was Tuesday. Returning to the car they saw that a window had been broken. He was robbed of his carryon bag. It had his journals, pmg, study journals and important items to him but to a thief, no! He was devastated. He told us "I thought I was safe putting my important items in the carry-on bag and not to risk loosing checked on luggage. Never occurred to me that the carry-on bag would be stolen"! Our hearts were also aching for his loss. I couldn't help have the thought "the adversary can steal and rob our possessions but he can never robb what is in the heart, his testimony"! After reporting the theift to the Police, time was ticking. They needed all this time to fill out the paperwork. They arrived at the Embassy at 12:50. day. 10 minutes to spare, with the Visa papers and told that he could pick up his Visa Friday morning. This time when they returned to the embassy they took 4 Elders. Two to go inside and the other two to stay with the car! When he returned to the car, the car wouldn't start! The battery was dead! Elder Reber was beginning to feel nervous at what was going to happen next!
Friday morning, his Visa was ready and he boarded the plane to Brazil Friday afternoon. His flight landed in Sao Paulo where he would need to go thru customs. He only had 2 hours. The plane was 30 minutes late in taking off so it was doubtful that he could get thru customs and to his gate for his connecting flight to Cuiaba. When landing in Sao Paulo as he exited the gate there was someone waiting for him "are you Dallen?" he asked. Dallen replied back "Yes". The this man explained that he would walk him thru customs and all the lines. He escorted him to the front of every line. Dallen rush to shuttle which was the last shuttle bus to his next flight. His plane arrive in Cuiaba at 12:15 am.
the following is what Elder Reber emailed to us in his own words
The Emassy told me that if we can get a few things done before 1:00pm (it is 12:05) right now then I could get my Visa this Friday, but if not then it would be at least another week. So I don't know what we will do because I don't know if we cant get the stuff done before 1 and get back to the embassy.
What a hectic day.
Let me quickly tell you about it:
At about 10:30 we went to the Embassy to get things figured out, we were there for about 20 minutes and they told us what we had to get done but he told us that if we brought all the stuff we needed before 1 then I could get my Visa on Friday but if we didnt get there on time (before 1) then it would be about 2 weeks. So we ran back to the car in a hurry to get everything done and as we got close to the car I thought ¨since when is the window broken?¨ then I thought ¨Nooo! Someone broke in¨ so I ran up to the window expecting to find the car empty (my two carry on bags were in there) but the first things I saw was one of my bags that has my camera in it so that was a relief to see that they didnt take that bag because I would have lost all my pictures for my mission but then I looked for my other bag and it wasnt there. they stole it. That bag basically had all my books, Preach my Gospel, Study journals, my Journals and my first Book of Mormon in the mission. 2 of my 3 mission journals were in there and so they are now gone. That is what obviously jsut tears me apart. We got in the car and started driving around looking for the guy and we called the police so they came and hopefully when the guy sees that there is nothing of interest in the bag he will just leave it around somewhere so it gets sent in. Wow. Great ´extra´ day in Chile. Incredible right? But hey, if I never see my journals again, atleast I have the pictures to tell the story. But after that we had to hurry and make some quick travels back and forth from the office to the Embassy because we were short on time with the whole Robbing incident pushing us back on time but we were able to arrive right before 1 to get things figured out and we are good for a Visa on Friday. So I will be in Brazil Friday night. It has been a crazy day. The only time I ever get robbed on Chile is the day that I shouldnt be here. Nuts. But hey, throwing a fit wont bring the bag back. Love you all and Im excited to be here for a few more days and to go to Brazil this week. See you all soon. Love you all.
Love Elder Reber :)