A single mom who captured the hearts of Sarnians as she coped with the death of a daughter and her own cancer fight, died Jan. 3 at St. Joseph’s Hospice.
Visitation and a memorial service were held this week held for Krista Clark, 38, after she succumbed to colon cancer.
Local residents rallied around Clark and her three boys in late 2020 after word spread she had terminal cancer. Multiple fundraisers were organized by friends to ensure the children enjoyed Christmas with their mom, and a fund was established to support them as they grow up.
When a call went out for gifts and money, organizers were stunned by the generosity.
“This community has essentially taken those boys in and made sure they feel loved and that Krista feels loved,” Dr. Cassandra Taylor said at the time. She and several friends co-ordinated an online auction and raffles that generated at least $75,000 for a trust fund and resulted in a flurry of gifts and surprises for Clark, her twin boys, now 9, and youngest son Jack, 7.
A GoFundMe campaign for the Clark’s far exceeded its $10,000 goal and raised more than $44,000.
Businesses and musicians stepped up to hold charitable events. When Clark needed a new freezer and fridge, both were donated and a food supplier offered to fill the freezer.
It wasn’t the first time the community came together to help the family.
A few years earlier, fundraisers were held for Clark’s daughter, 10-year-old Jaylyn, who battled a rare cancer and died in 2019.
On Jan. 3, Taylor posted to Facebook that Clark was reunited with Jaylyn in heaven.
“Thank you to everyone who donated money and services last Christmas when we embarked on the fundraiser,” Taylor wrote. “Because of you, her boys will be taken care (of) and I know this community will help carry them through this difficult time.
“Rest in peace, Krista. Cancer will not win,” Taylor added.
Krista Clark was the daughter of David and Tammy Clark, sister of Brad (Nancy) Clark and aunt of Emily and Maddison.
She worked as a personal support worker at Marshall Gowland Manor. Her obituary notes that she played baseball on multiple teams, enjoyed live country and rock concerts, was a licensed pilot and enjoyed painting.
“She was a loving and devoted mother who will be remembered for her strength and integrity, especially when caring for Jaylyn during her seven years of cancer treatments,” it reads.
A funeral service was live streamed on Jan. 10. Participants were asked to pay tribute to Krista and Jaylyn by wearing Converse running shoes.
Krista Clark’s obituary can be viewed at Smith Funeral Home: https://smithfuneralhome.ca/memorial/krista-lynn-clark-0