UCC victim Sarena Moore had “humble, teachable approach to life” - KPTV - FOX 12

UCC victim Sarena Moore had “humble, teachable approach to life”

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Sarena Moore, courtesy of the Oregon Conference of Seventh Day Adventists. Sarena Moore, courtesy of the Oregon Conference of Seventh Day Adventists.
One of the love rocks at the memorial outside the UCC campus. One of the love rocks at the memorial outside the UCC campus.

As memorial services get underway for the victims of the Umpqua Community College shooting, friends and family gathered Wednesday morning to remember Sarena Moore, one of nine people who were killed.

Moore was a mother of three who loved animals, especially horses and dogs, and volunteered her time.

Family members describe her as a woman with “a caring heart that was bigger than life itself” who attended UCC to “better herself."

She lost her life there at the age of 44.

A memorial service was held Wednesday morning for Moore at the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Myrtle Creek, where she often worshipped.

“She moved here [from Grants Pass] and set up an apartment so that she could be closer to the college.  She ultimately wanted to finish her college,” Pastor Chester Schurch told Fox 12.  “That’s why she came.”

Pastor Schurch said Moore was a woman with a gentle spirit and kind soul who talked about wanting to open an animal shelter someday.

“I think it wasn’t so much that she was a powerful, popular, rich or famous person, it was actually just the opposite that attracted people to her,” Pastor Schurch explained.  "She always had a humble, teachable approach to life."

“She had a wonderful sense of humor and people enjoyed that, the laughing and her warmth,” his wife Cindy added.

He said many of Moore’s family members attended Wednesday’s service and spoke about how the various ways she impacted their lives – but they weren’t the only ones in attendance.

UCC President Rita Carvin was also there.

“One of the things we saw here that was totally surprising was a huge delegation from Umpqua Community College,” he added.  “They had everyone from the [college] president to the teachers and classmates.  I could not believe the number of people that were there representing her.”

Pastor Schurch and his wife planned to come to Roseburg for a shopping trip Thursday morning, but when they learned of the shooting they rushed to the fairgrounds to help in any way possible as students and their families were reunited.

He said 22 pastors and scores of other people like counselors and psychologists were already there, embodying the spirit of the small town now in the national spotlight for the worst possible reason.

“It’s almost like [people here] have been slapped across the face and are thrust into an atmosphere that they’re totally unfamiliar with,” he said.  “To turn on the TV and hear the national news talking about your local area is also disconcerting to the person who has stayed in the quiet pastures of southern Douglas County.”

Coinciding with her service, Sarena Moore’s family released this statement about her passing:

“Sarena Moore will be missed for many reasons, but the one that stands out the most is that Sarena had a caring heart that was bigger than life itself. Whether it was for the horses she loved, the dog she adored, the family members or even the many friends she had since being a young girl, she cared for them endlessly. There are some that believe that had Sarena known her shooter, she would have cared for him as much as she does everyone else.

Sarena had a positive attitude and approach to life that was infectious beyond belief. She brought smiles and joy to all that came in contact with her. Starting at age 6, she did gymnastics on horseback so that she could raise money to benefit horsemanship for the handicapped. She also donated her money to support the local horsemanship for the handicapped club. She donated her time to the homeless shelter and assisted with the Special Olympics while living in Reno, NV. She attended U.C.C. so that she could better herself and become even more self-sufficient.

Sarena will be missed by her dad and mom, Robert and Pamela Goin; by her brother, Rick Goin; by her sons, Walter, Kenneth and Michael Dickens; by her uncle and aunt, Jerry and Marda May; and by her life partner, Travis Dow.”

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