Lakewood renaming school library in honor of educator who died in fire
The Lakewood school district will be renaming a school library and offer a scholarship in honor of the beloved educator who died in a Toms River house fire Friday night.
The funeral for Sara Trahey, who leaves behind a husband and three young children, will be Thursday.
The house that she shared with with husband Jeff and Riley, 2, Jaxon, 7, and Casey, 8, on 15th Street in the Silverton section of Toms River went up in flames on Friday night and quickly spread to four neighboring houses because of high winds, according to Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer. Trahey was trapped in the house while the rest of her family escaped.
Billhimer on Monday said the post-mortem examination of Trahey's body determined that the manner of death was accidental and the cause of death was smoke inhalation and fire-related injuries. The cause of the fire remained under investigation.
The Lakewood Board of Education at their next public meeting will dedicate the library at the Ella G. Clarke Elementary School in honor of Trahey's, who worked at the school as a librarian, officials said Tuesday. The board will also announce a $1,000 yearly scholarship sponsored by school district attorney Michael Inzebuch and his wife.
"My wife previously was a public school teacher, my mother is a retired principal in Jackson public schools and my uncle is retired and was a retired teacher at Clarke. He worked there for more than 30 years. We thought this was something we could do in her memory which would perpetuate all the great things she did for our kids," Inzebuch told New Jersey 101.5.
The scholarship is for a high school student who wants to study library science at a college level, Inzelbuch said.
Trahey's funeral is 11 a.m. Thursday at St. Joseph’s Church in Toms River. Services will be 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Anderson and Campbell Funeral Home in Toms River.
According to her obituary, Trahey's "infectious love of reading" led her to a career as a librarian. She was also a soccer and baseball coach and a volunteer at her children's school events.
Her obituary remembered her as having an "infectious smile was constantly affixed to her face all while being able to razz you with a sarcastic joke. A free and wild spirit that had a powerful love for life, her family and friends."
A GoFundMe page has collected $115,000 to help with funeral expenses and for the immediate needs of the Trahey family.
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