Born on November 17, 1983 to Andy and Debbie Tabbert, married to John Sturgis on April 5, 2008, and passed away on June 23, 2012 from a motorcycle accident.
Thoughts, Memories, and Stories about Tara:
I have known Tara for over 16 years. We first met in the 7th grade when I
moved to Linden. While trying to think of a few stories to tell, there are so
many wonderful memories of our friendship that run through my head.
One of my favorite memories with Tara would have to be our 17th birthday
party! (We were born only 13 days apart!) Tara and I had two other friends,
Staci and Courtney, which also had birthdays within a few days of ours. For our
17th birthday, we all decided to have one big birthday party. We planned,
invited, and decorated the hall together. Sharing a close birthday with Tara is
something that I will never forget. We had the times of our lives that night!
Another wonderful memory of my friendship with Tara was going to her
families’ cabin up north to Gladwin. We would spend the days being goofy with
each other and her friends that she introduced me to. We would dance and sing
our hearts out to the Coyote Ugly soundtrack. (Playing Can’t Fight The
Moonlight over and over and over again!!) I could go on and on about the
wonderful times in Gladwin, but I might share some secrets we had!
Finally, one of the memories that I cherish the most is the time we spent
together creating our scrapbooks. (We were both quite “crafty”. In fact, we
hired into Michael’s together our senior year!) We would spend hours in her
parents basement cropping, gluing, cutting, and stickering. We would laugh
together while looking at pictures from throughout the years. Creating these
scrapbooks has given me something that I can physically look at, and remember
not only the fun times from throughout high school, but also the wonderful
times I had while creating them with Tara.
There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think about Tara and what an
amazing person she was. I feel that fate brought us together again (via phone)
only two short days before her passing. I will forever cherish those last few
words and moments that we were able to speak. We talked about helping plan our
10 year high school reunion this summer and the kitten she had in the car with
her that she would be showing on the news the next morning.
I am honored to say that Tara (Tabbert) Sturgis was my friend and it is a
privilege to be able to keep her name alive through the Tara Sturgis Memorial
Fund. I appreciate your support and I know that Tara would feel the same.
Tara is my big sister, and while we didn't always get along growing up, she was the one person I could count on to always stand up for me. Tara's love of animals couldn't help but rub off on me (I own a dog and 2 chinchillas as well as being obsessed with marine life and graduating with a degree in Zoology). I was always a little scared of horses (those things are massive) but Tara let me tag along to Holly's house and there she would force me to ride (a lot of times bare back) Nipper. To this day, I still have the scar where that mean ole horse bit me but I wouldn't trade those days for anything. Riding was always Tara's "thing" but I loved spending time on the trail with my sister.
When our parents took us on a family vacation to Hawaii to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary, Tara and I went riding up an inactive volcanic mountain. The man running the operation allowed us to be in the back and lag behind so we could canter to catch up. Tara convinced the man she knew what she was doing when first arrived because nothing irritated her more than not being able to go fast. While we were cantering to catch up, I noticed that I wasn't quite upright in my saddle anymore. With every movement of the horse, I slid a little further sideways. As I yelled back to Tara to tell her I needed to stop, I got "the look". Eventually, when I was fully parallel to the ground, I got my horse to stop and Tara came up and helped me off. I still remember how mad Tara got at the rental place because if anyone other than experienced riders had been placed on this horse someone could have gotten seriously injured or worse, injured the horse.
Tara loved her work at the Humane Society of Genesee County because she got to make a difference in an animal's life everyday. Many times Tara put in long hours and spent weekends caring for the animals as well as organizing PR & fundraising events for the shelter. Tara truly lived her life for the betterment of animals (every kind you can think of) and I am proud to be apart of this memorial fund to help her passion for caring for animals continue.
I love you Bella, Squirt (aka Amanda)
A few of Tara's favorite animal quotes:
Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our life whole ~Roger Caras
Women and cats will do as they please, men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea~Robert A Heinlein
If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went~Will Rogers
There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face~Ben Williams
If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise~Unknown