Written by: Jeremy Baumhower
Sarah and her family. (pictured left to right: Kayla, Sarah, Baby Nick & Dan, Ricci, Maddie and Chris, and Kyleigh
I met Sarah Beacher a couple different times. Each one was somehow related to helping another person or group.
Sarah was the 31 year-old mom, who was gunned down in an East Toledo neighborhood, on August 11th.
Her crime; wrong place, wrong time.
Ms. Beacher was engaged to Dan, together they have a blended-family of five beautiful children; Kyleigh, Ricci, Kayla, Maddie and a baby boy, Nick.
If you look at her Facebook page and peek through her photos, you will see some amazing things; she volunteered at her kids’ school, she coached a cheer-leading squad, she loved herself and her friends, and the true key to whom she was– her kids are always smiling. Every photo, every situation; her babies, through birth or pure love, are smiling. That says something about the household and especially her heart.
I imagine if she didn’t feed the entire neighborhood, if she didn’t give what she had to others– her family might be a little more financially prepared for this moment. But what family ever is?
She was proud of her roots, of her East Toledo neighborhood. Was always advocating for improvements and policing her neighborhood. I have learned recently she had been concerned about a family that moved nearby, and discussed it at her work.
The police have no active leads, but the early theory could be based on her previous concerns. She wasn’t the target of the shooting, she was just being a mom, sitting on her porch–enjoying the day.
Our town, this community, lost someone who made a difference. Sarah wasn’t an elected official, nor a person who craved attention– she was a proud East Toledo mother, who tried her best to improve that block and this city. The lessons she instilled in her classic-Toledo-blended family, will never be forgotten. Always smile, always help, always love life and each other.
As a father of four, I know how difficult it is to get your children to smile for a picture. I understand that genuine smiles reflect the child’s happiness and is proof of how loved they are. Pictures of children say a million things about the quality of parenting they’ve experienced.
My fear is that Sarah’s beautiful children will lose their smile. I don’t want her hard work, her hopes and dreams for her children, like her life– ended with some bullets.
I am going to eventually ask you for money to help this family. I have informed her co-workers about the Ohio Victim’s fund, which will hopefully cover the cost of her funeral. I want to make sure there is a good plan in place for the funds we are going to raise.
She did nothing wrong, she was just being Sarah, and someone stole her life. Someone stole a mom from five children.
My hopes and dreams for her family is to raise enough money to send her children to college. To provide them with an education and future, one she was working so hard to achieve. To eliminate that stress from Dan, so he can focus on being a dad. To make sure these children do not become another statistic of the senseless violence in our society. To give her babies the opportunity of making their mom proud, in heaven. To show them how beautiful the world can be, even after moments of complete ugliness.
Maybe a local college will see what she meant to our community and step up to ensure these children’s futures are protected. This is the character of student you want enrolled in your college or University. A decision that makes this is the low-point in a story of a fantastic life and career. This type of character isn’t learned, it’s ingested through osmosis.
This city just inherited the future of five souls. We need to always watch out for them, while not constantly reminding them of this sadness and pain. We can not fail these kids again.
Sometimes life sucks. Sometimes life is unfair. It’s what we do in these darkest of times that shows why this city, and this neighborhood is so special. Sometimes you have to respond to life with a middle-finger, and a smile. The very thing East Toledoans are known for.
Keep smiling, no matter how impossible it seems. Keep smiling.
I’m so sorry Dan.
Please post your favorite Sarah story below. Help prove why these children and this family is different. Let’s show those with the decision power to change a life, that these babies are worthy.