EWU student's family and peers reflect on her life
EWU student's family and peers reflect on her life

Source: Google News

Sierra Stoddard was on her way back to EWU when a drunk driver crashed into her car. Now, Stoddard’s family and peers mourn as they reflect on the life she lived.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Sending kids away to college can be hard on parents, and when Tracy Stoddard sent away her daughter to Eastern Washington University (EWU) for her sophomore year, she had no idea it would be the last time she would see her. 

“It was really hard when she went away to school. But you know, she was just excited for her future, but it was hard to say goodbye to my best friend,” Stoddard said.

While driving back from Cheney to Cashmere, Sierra and her friend were hit head-on by a drunk driver. Sierra’s friend and the other driver survived the accident. However, according to the Washington State Patrol (WSP), Sierra died on impact.

The driver had been going east in the westbound lane for nearly eight miles. 

Now, Tracy Stoddard faces living a life without her only child. 

“I can’t sleep, I can’t eat. I’ve had to go to the hospital because I’ve been having migraines. You know, I’m puking all the time.” Stoddard said. “I don’t know what to do without her in my life. She was my only child. So you know, I’ll never have grandchildren or anything,” 

Sierra was a student worker in EWU’s Africana studies department. Her supervisor said everyone in the department will feel this loss. 

“Our program isn’t going to be the same. We’re going to miss her. We miss her terribly. We lost such an important part and the university lost somebody so amazing,” they said. “I have a two-year-old son and I just can’t imagine losing a child. Her mom is unfortunate living every parent’s worst nightmare, and to lose someone as bright and as wonderful as her. It’s just so heartbreaking. So Africana studies honestly send condolences to her family. We wish them the best praying for them.” 

A GoFundMe for Sierra has raised more than $20,000 dollars in just three days. 

According to Stoddard, the money will be used to cover funeral expenses and potentially put towards a scholarship at Sierra’s old high school for future students going to EWU.

Tracy hopes this situation serves as a reminder to never drink and drive because you never know how many lives you can affect with one accident. 

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