If you haven’t heard yet, Stockton Unified board member Sara Cazares passed away early yesterday morning at 48.
Cazares was very visible in the community, but this is an opportunity to share a story about a kindness she performed out of the spotlight in late 2011.
In mid-November that year, I learned that the mother of an SUSD special-needs student had died under extremely sad circumstances. The child’s devastated father had little money and nowhere to turn for a nice Thanksgiving meal for his only child.
I called Sara because I wanted to make sure someone in the school district knew of the family’s plight. Sara reminded me of a free Thanksgiving meal and clothing giveaway that would be taking place shortly, I think at Cleveland Elementary but it really doesn’t matter. Sara urged me to tell the father to bring his daughter.
After the free Thanksgiving meal, I asked Sara if the man and his little girl had attended. She confirmed they had shown up and eaten, mentioned how nice the man was and that his daughter was very cute and sweet. But that was about it.
A few days later, though, I spoke to the man and heard a different story. He told me Sara, who he had never met before the Thanksgiving gathering, had come to him “like an angel from heaven.” She loaded them down with free food. She loaded them down with free clothes. She gave them $100 from her own wallet.
The story was never told publicly until today, and if Sara wouldn’t want it public now, tough.
If you have memories of Sara you would like to share, send me an email at email@example.com and I will post it below.