Sarah’s smile

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By Jamie Baker-Nantz


Friends recall life of Williamstown woman killed in I-75 crash


Wherever you saw Sarah Schoenman, you saw a friendly, wide-toothed smile that lit up her eyes.

That’s what her friends will miss following the 30-year-old Williamstown woman’s death last week in an automobile accident in Walton.

“She constantly smiled,” said Stephanie Howe Conrad. “Even when she wasn’t posing for a picture, she was still smiling.”
Conrad knew Schoenman when the two were students at Grant County High School.

Schoenman was an eighth grade student and Conrad was a sophomore when both joined the band and eventually the color guard.

“We spent a lot of time together back then,” Conrad said. “She was at my house a lot and I’ve been to her house many times and woken her up on Saturday morning by jumping on her bed.”

Conrad recalled one Christmas when the two were hanging out and they decided to surprise Conrad’s parents by decorating the outside of the house with lights. When they couldn’t find a ladder,

Schoenman climbed up on Conrad’s shoulders and hung them as far as she could until the slope of the lawn made it impossible to reach any higher.

“That’s just the way she was. If it was a reasonable request, she was up for it and would usually fall over laughing doing it,” Conrad said.
After Conrad graduated GCHS, Conrad’s cousins and Schoenman visited her at Georgetown College several times.

“She was just special and always up for a good time,” Conrad said. “She laughed all the time and was an eternal optimist.”
Schoenman was killed in a four-vehicle collision at 7 p.m. on Interstate-75 on June 12. According to a press release from the Boone County Sheriff’s Office, all four vehicles were in the center lane when traffic slowed to a near stop due to a repaving road construction project. Harlan Jones, 57, of Dry Ridge, was unable to slow his 2000 Toyota 4Runner fast enough and it hit the 1997 Toyota Camry driven by Schoenman.

The force of the impact slammed the Camry into a 2006 ford Taurus operated by Kimberly Summers, 42, of Indianapolis and the Taurus into a 2006 Dodge Stratus driven by Timothy Cranert, 47, of Corinth.
The roadway was closed until 10:30 p.m. when it reopened to traffic.
Schoenman is survived by a son, Camden Reed Courtney, as well as her parents, Fred and Sharon Schoenman of Williamstown and Gail Ruark and Russell “Doc” Bowen of Crittenden.

Schoenman’s sister, Brandy Conrad, was killed in a car accident on Oct. 17, 1995 on Ky. 36 in Williamstown. Following Conrad’s death, her family traveled to Frankfort to speak to Kentucky lawmakers in support of changing teen driving laws to allow more time between obtaining a permit and an actual license.

Schoenman was a member of Crittenden Baptist Church and a paralegal for Brandon Voelker, an attorney in Williamstown.

She impacted those who knew her.

“She was a wonderful young woman, just a beautiful young mother and her son, Camden, was her whole life. She lived for him,” said Gayle Weigel, a part-time legal assistant who worked with Schoenman.

Weigel spent three years working alongside her.
“She was just a sweet woman, good with people,” Weigel said. “We just always had a good time and I’m going to miss just being with her.”

Others remembered her with posts on Facebook following her death.
“Sarah Schoenman was such a bright soul. Her laugh was infectious and her spirit was beautiful. I can remember her from elementary school being the kind of person you just wanted to be around because she was always so happy,” Anitra Fields Jump wrote.
“I hate this for her little boy. I pray he is always told how amazing his mom was and how much she loved him,” wrote Cara Jump O’Brien.

Funeral services were held June 15. Burial was in Hill Crest Cemetery in Dry Ridge. Complete obituary information can be found on page 17 of this issue.

Memorials are suggested to the Camden Courtney Trust Fund, 1205 Oak Ridge Road, Williamstown, Ky. 41097.