Sarah McCausland's parents share memories on eve of memorial service; Bard College student from Winnetka killed in hit-and-run

February 7, 2014 (WINNETKA, Ill.)

Sarah McCausland was attending Bard College when she was killed in Tivoli, New York.

The McCauslands spent Friday night writing a eulogy they never dreamed they'd have to deliver. They sat down with Eyewitness News in the hopes that their daughter's life will be defined by more than its final moments.

Sarah McCausland was a talented singer. Her voice, like her life, was radiant and full.

"What gives us a little bit of joy is that just knowing that she had such an impact on this world, that she crammed so much life into 19 years," said Sandra McCausland.

Sandra and Andy McCausland spoke of their oldest child, whose senseless death at the hands of an alleged drunk driver still doesn't seem real.

"We can't wrap our minds around it. All we can do is try to cope and get through this together," said Andy McCausland.

It happened one week ago in New York state while Sarah was at college. She and a friend were hit and killed while walking with others along a quiet stretch of road. The driver kept on going.

"She was happy one moment, and then it ended. There's a little bit of solace in knowing that she didn't suffer," said Sandra.

Police would arrest 63-year-old Carol Boeck, a local woman now charged with vehicular manslaughter and DWI.

"Why beautiful two girls in the prime of their life were struck down by a person who was completely irresponsible, we can't wrap our minds around it," said Andy.

But the McCauslands say this weekend is about celebrating Sarah, an honors graduate of New Trier High school, and an old soul with a young heart, whose song was still being written.

"We're so proud of her. We're so absolutely proud to have been her parents. And that is a joy that will last a lifetime," said Sandra.

The driver who was arrested has been charged with manslaughter and driving while intoxicated. Police say it's her second arrest for DWI.

The price of drunk driving is something the McCauslands hope others take from their tragedy.

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