Dear Sarah

Dear Sarah,

I wish you were here. There’s so much that has been happening. From my limited earthly view, sometimes it feels like you’re missing out, but other times I feel that you’re closer than I realize. Your story is definitely not over. Your impact is still making a difference. I often wonder if you’re helping Jesus weave such a beautiful tapestry of events. As we navigate through the grief and pain of being separated from you, we’re finding ways to honor you and still shine your light. Our community has been so kind to help find ways to make sure that you will never be forgotten.

Your FFA Club has been so thoughful and blessed us so much. They have been so creative in finding ways to remember you and grieve with us, but also serve and live with a positive joyful vibe- from the lantern that shines for you in the new Ag Department, to the new swing in the courtyard with your quote inscribed, “Be outrageously outgoing just for the fun of it!” Such a good motto and sums up your personality so well. They were sweet to include you in the opening ceremonies at this year’s banquet-glowsticks and all. You’d be so proud of all that they accomplished this year! Even the State FFA President, Julia Hamblen, shared a bit of your story all around the state, because she was so inspired by your infectious smile and positivity. You’d be so proud of Libby and her excitement for all things FFA. She’s learning, growing, and serving so proudly. She even got to step in as reporter for opening ceremonies during the awards night and she nailed it! We’ll forever be grateful to the Blue and Gold for how they celebrate you! They even made us Honorary Members! Mamaw, Papaw, Aunt Terri & Uncle Kevin even found a special way to honor you and give back at the banquet. This year’s inaugural FFA “Sarah R Taylor Scholarship” award went to Marnie Schwartzkopf. I know you’re proud of that.

The Hauser Music Department was also important to you. Your 7th grade year was special because you were able to participate in band and choir. You would have done both every year, if your schedule would have allowed. It was always so hard for you to just blend in with the other members, because you couldn’t keep from smiling-or standing still! I giggle a little whenever I recall having to talk to you about it. Lol! It was like I had to tell you to quit having so much fun! Music was and probably still is a big part of who you are. Mr. Klinger found such a special way to remember and honor you. He started a new award called “The Sarah Taylor Award for Positive Mental Attitude.” There’s a beautiful new plaque that will hang in the music department hallway. His heartfelt words paid tribute to you and brought comfort as he reminisced about you and promised that although you would always be missed, you would never be forgotten. This year’s inaugural winner was awarded at the spring concert to Miss Rachel Jones.

We were also touched by the school’s plans to name the new photography club that will be starting next year after you! Mrs. Tom and Ms. Foug have been awarded a Lily Creativity Endowment and their going to start a photography club and name it after you. Isn’t that so amazing?! We can’t wait to see how it grows and the art that comes from it.

We’re pouring ourselves into continuing the ministry that you started through the “GLOW like Sarah Fund.” We’re picking projects and things that you were passionate about and so excited to share with others. Our first Fire & Music night was amazing! We announced our first Bible Journaling Workshop and so far 22 girls have signed up! I’ve been walking on “Cloud 9” ever since and in some ways it makes me feel like you are right beside me. I’ve noticed little signs over the past few days that tell me that were taking all the right steps. Things are falling into place and I pray that we’ll keep planting and tending to the seeds that you started. I wonder what this garden looks like from your viewpoint?

BTW, I’m not sure if it was you or Jesus who sent the Firefly when it finally got dark at the Fire & Music night?! The way it hovered around us was just supernatural. Then it landed on the tree and just sat-blinking it’s light. A few of us who noticed were amazed! It was definitely a goosebumps moment as we realized the significance of it. It was the perfect ending to our first Fire & Music night. Fireflies aren’t usually flying around in May in Indiana-usually the soybeans are pretty tall in the fields when we start to see them. We’ll keep growing the glow and you just keep finding ways to “show off,” ok?