On Tuesday evening, just hours after Goldberg’s memorial service, Sandberg finally broke her silence. She posted a heart-wrenching statement to her Facebook page in which she described her husband’s passing as “the darkest and saddest” moment of her life but vowed to battle on in his memory.
“I want to thank all of our friends and family for the outpouring of love over the past few days. It has been extraordinary – and each story you have shared will help keep Dave alive in our hearts and memories,” she wrote.
“I met Dave nearly 20 years ago when I first moved to LA. He became my best friend. He showed me the internet for the first time, planned fun outings, took me to temple for the Jewish holidays, introduced me to much cooler music than I had ever heard.
“We had 11 truly joyful years of the deepest love, happiest marriage, and truest partnership that I could imagine. He gave me the experience of being deeply understood, truly supported and completely and utterly loved – and I will carry that with me always. Most importantly, he gave me the two most amazing children in the world.
“Dave was my rock. When I got upset, he stayed calm. When I was worried, he said it would be ok. When I wasn’t sure what to do, he figured it out. He was completely dedicated to his children in every way – and their strength these past few days is the best sign I could have that Dave is still here with us in spirit.”
On Tuesday morning, Sandberg had changed her Facebook cover photo to a picture of her and Goldberg on their wedding day. Now she wrote that she “would still have walked down that aisle” even knowing he would die during a tragic exercise accident a decade later.
“Dave and I did not get nearly enough time together,” she wrote. “But as heartbroken as I am today, I am equally grateful. Even in these last few days of completely unexpected hell – the darkest and saddest moments of my life – I know how lucky I have been. If the day I walked down that aisle with Dave someone had told me that this would happen – that he would be taken from us all in just 11 years – I would still have walked down that aisle. Because 11 years of being Dave Goldberg’s wife, and 10 years of being a parent with him is perhaps more luck and more happiness than I could have ever imagined. I am grateful for every minute we had.
“As we put the love of my life to rest today, we buried only his body. His spirit, his soul, his amazing ability to give is still with it. It lives on in the stories people are sharing of how he touched their lives, in the love that is visible in the eyes of our family and friends, in the spirit and resilience of our children. Things will never be the same – but the world is better for the years my beloved husband lived.”
“David Goldberg embodied the definition of a real leader — someone who was always looking for ways to empower others,” Obama wrote. “He was generous and kind with everybody, and cared less about the limelight than making sure that the people he worked with and loved succeeded in whatever they did.”
Sandberg thanked the president on her Facebook page, “Thank you President Barack Obama for this beautiful tribute — and for your friendship to our family,” Sandberg wrote. “Dave Goldberg admired you for your leadership, passion, and your deep love of sports.”
Even as politicians and business leaders praised Goldberg, however, there was still an air of mystery over his death Friday. Goldberg, the chief executive of SurveyMonkey, was running on a treadmill at a private villa near Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, when he reportedly fell and hit his head. Mexican authorities have ruled out foul play, the AP reported.
The deadly accident has drawn attention to the dangers of treadmills, which were associated with 24,400 injuries in the United States last year and 30 deaths from 2003 to 2012, according to the AP.