herald

Friday 13 December 2019

Jason's girl Sarah (13) is hailed for 'inspirational' book to help grieving kids

Sarah Corbett Lynch and brother Jack
Sarah Corbett Lynch and brother Jack
Sarah Corbett Lynch pictured with her first book "Noodle looses Dad". Photo: Don Moloney

A young Irish girl who lost her parents to a tragic asthma attack and a brutal murder said she hopes her new children's book will help other youngsters cope with loss and heartache.

Sarah Corbett Lynch (13), from Limerick, has been hailed as "inspirational" for her new illustrated book which aims to help children trying to deal with grief, isolation and adapting to a new family support environment.

Sarah was just a few weeks old when her mother, Margaret 'Mags' Fitzpatrick, died in November 2006 from a severe asthma attack aged just 31.

Her devoted father, Jason, was then murdered in North Carolina in the United States in August 2015 by her step-mother, Molly Martens, who had previously been her nanny.

Ms Martens, along with her father Tom, who was also convicted of second degree murder, are now serving 20-25 year prison sentences.

Sarah said the trauma of the past four years has only been manageable thanks to the love and help of her extended Irish family - led by Jason's sister Tracey and her husband Dave.

Now, the precocious 13-year-old has written a children's book saga, dubbed 'The Boogawooga Series', in a bid to help other children facing challenges in their lives.

Fittingly, the title 'Boogawooga' comes from a story and mimic her late father used to tell Sarah and her older brother Jack (15) as children, usually at bedtime.

"I began writing because I found it helped me," Sarah told the Herald.

"I was just eight when I lost my dad. He was incredible and the most important person in our lives. My brother Jack and I have had a lot going on in our lives - we moved to the US only to move back to Ireland again."

"We changed schools, moved away from our friends, made new friends and settled into a new life with my aunt and uncle in Limerick."

Sarah said she realised that not all children live carefree young lives, and those who face challenges need every support they can get.

Grief

"I wanted to write about my experiences because I thought they might help someone else. I realised that I wasn't the only person in life trying to deal with grief, loss and the worry about new things and fitting in.

"I was also inspired by Tracey, because she wrote a book called My Brother Jason about the campaign to get justice for my dad and it became a bestseller.

"My brother and I had fantastic support here in Limerick. We are now living in our favourite place on the entire planet."

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