Today, February 20, 2023, marks nine years since Sarah Jones lost her life while working on the movie ‘Midnight Rider’.
A fellow crewmate and friend of Sarah’s, Karen, wrote a letter a few months after Sarah’s death in 2014. It is powerful and expresses who Sarah was.
Karen closes her letter with:
““People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Well… Sarah Jones made me feel good; and for that, I am FOREVER grateful.”
I hope you will take a few moments to read it.
Richard Jones, father of Sarah Jones
Present day introduction from Karen -
Nine years ago, on February 20, I thought I was going to die. When the train came to a stop, I realized I was alive. Unfortunately, the person I hugged moments before stepping on the trestle, was not.
Never Forget, Never Again.
Original letter follows:
August 1, 2014
Dear Family and Friends, Your care, concern, kind words and meaningful messages have been soothing to my soul. So Thank You for your thoughts and prayers. I sincerely appreciate your patience and apologize for taking so long to write, but hope you sympathize with my pain. The accident has been hard to bear and healing has not come easy; as I’ve yet to be released to return to work.
Though time has passed my heart is still heavy and thoughts remain with the families affected. Thinking particularly of my friend, it goes without saying, I miss Sarah Jones.
Sarah’s aura was pleasant and peaceful, her energy so kind. She was an absolute joy to be around. Keva and I rooted for her since meeting on her first television series in Charleston, where as an intern Sarah stood out. Impressed, Keva and I said, “That little girl needs to get paid!” ☺
Sarah hustled with a smile and worked with confidence and respect for the Camera Department that was full of professionals committed to teaching her the craft she would one day excel at. Excel she did. I’m glad I got to witness her evolution and celebrate her success by giving her a high five the day she told me she was finally getting paid!
Back in the day Sarah helped my sister and I fulfill a dream of ours. She volunteered to make our first short film “Letters From Home.” What a wonderful crew! Keva and I hold the utmost level of appreciation and gratitude for each person who helped too.
As this day finds us, I consider myself the last person on earth to receive a hug from Sarah. I believe God had me wait, and wait and wait to get that hug before stepping on the trestle. Most of the crew had gone on to set up. We reunited when she stepped off to get something.
Sarah’s energy matched the beauty of the day. Radiant, as defined by Merriam-Webster. She was Super happy to see me, as was I to see her! With arms stretched wide Sarah ran down the slope on the side of the tracks and right into my arms! We hugged so tight we spun around… It was pure joy!!!
To have that juxtaposed with what was to happen less than 30 minutes later was pure pain.
On a film set TIME is the most valuable commodity. I wish the First AD had spent the time to call a “flag on the play” and investigate when she found out before stepping on the trestle, that there was a possibility of a 3rd train. I wish something would have been done with the new information, something to find out just how close the impending possibility was.
On May 28th Dr. Maya Angelou went home to be with the Lord. As millions mourn her passing and celebrate her legacy, I’m comforted by her words and life wisdom that are now brought to light in my heart. She said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Well… Sarah Jones made me feel good; and for that, I am FOREVER grateful.