Celebrating Sabrina: Community remembers life of Olney 8-year-old


OLNEY, Ill. (WTHI) – Bagpipes broke the silence on a cold Tuesday night. This as a community came together to remember the life of 8-year-old Sabrina Stauffenberg.

“She was loving, caring,” said Selena Hendrickson, “I used to go to church with her. She used to come up to me and give me hugs all the time. It’s really hard to have to see a little 8-year-old girl have to go.”

Sabrina died last week. Tuesday, many came to share memories, prayers and tears at the Angel of Hope Children’s Memorial Garden. The tragedy has not only rocked the community, but continues to leave many with unanswered questions.

“Terrifying because what if it were my sister or brother,” Hendrickson said, “I mean, it’s horrible. It’s crazy what the world is coming to now a days.”

“I really feel sorry for the family and I know it’s going to take a long time to get over that,” said Joseph Mithcell, family friend, “She wasn’t nothing but 8-years-old. Just 10 years from now, 18, what would she have been? She could’ve been the president you know, I just can’t imagine.”

Tuesday’s candlelight vigil included sweet words from family friends, schoolmates, as well as members of her church, which many say Sabrina was always actively involved.

“It’s just sad cause knowing that we lost someone who’s not coming to church, but it’s also happy because we know she’s in Heaven,” said Caleb Jennette, church member.

“She’s always smiling, having a big, huge smile on her face and she was never hardly any upset,” said Michaela Holland, best friend, “She’d want me to braid her hair and everything. I had fun with her. I spent the last moments as I could with her.”

Members of Sabrina’s family were also present at the vigil. While News 10 did reach out to them, they told us they’ve been advised not to comment.