Sarah Frei – Overcoming Trials with Love


Sarah Frei – Overcoming Trials with Love

While driving through Logan Canyon at 8 PM on July 30, 2020, Sarah Frei and her three friends were hit head on by a drunk driver going 70 mph. All were wearing their seatbelts and, thankfully, most only suffered some broken bones, fractures, and bruising. Sarah, however, lost 30% of her intestines (due to the seat belt cutting into her stomach), was confirmed paralyzed from the waist down, and due to severe muscular damage, had to have both legs amputated at mid thigh.

Sarah, a Senior at Clearfield High School, is the epitome of Copper Hills High School’s  theme for the year, “live in the now.” Despite being confined to a hospital room and undergoing 20 surgeries over the last couple months, she continues to choose joy.

Recently, Sarah began a rehabilitation program and shared about the experience on her Instagram ( saying, “I haven’t done much yet, but so far, I’ve been working on transferring from my bed to a wheelchair and wheeling myself around… All my wounds are healing up so nicely, and there haven’t been any complications. As my body heals, I feel stronger, so everything seems to be working out just the way it’s supposed to. I’ve learned so much here in the hospital. We can always be grateful for what we have. Always say I love you. Compliment people if it comes to your mind!”

Even when Sarah and her family are in a moment of great need, Sarah chooses to look outside herself. When asked what she admires most about Sarah’s response toward this experience, Sarah’s mom, Amy, said, “She continues to focus on other people instead of herself by getting to know her doctors and nurses. She takes interest in their lives and strives to uplift whenever possible despite her circumstances.”

It seems almost impossible to have a smile as big as Sarah’s in a time as challenging as hers, but she continues to light the world with the warmth that seems to radiate from her soul.

She didn’t acquire her inspiring resiliency over night, however. Like with anything, moments preceding her accident have helped her to respond with such immense positivity. Amy Frei, Sarah’s mom, says one moment that stands out occurred when Sarah was 15. Amy said, “[Sarah] and her brother, Jake, were driving home together. Jake was going to be late for work, and they were stuck in traffic. Sarah was getting frustrated and getting upset about the traffic and asked Jake why he wasn’t upset too. Jake said, ‘There’s nothing I can do about the traffic, so why be upset? It doesn’t change anything. There are things you can control and things you can’t control, so you might as well be happy and make the most of it. The only thing I can control is my attitude.’”

In a time when many things are uncontrollable for the Frei family, this wise counsel from an older brother has proven inspired.

Indeed, there is no time like “the now.” Even when “the now” seems messy, complicated, uncertain, and even a little bit scary, there is hope, and there is love. 

The Frei family has grown to cherish the present like never before. Amy Frei said, “As a family, we had an instant change in our perspective [after Sarah’s accident]. We realize that what really matters in life is relationships with those around us. The inconveniences of life no longer bother us. We simply value being together.”

Even though most of Sarah’s family and friends can’t currently visit her in the hospital due to COVID-19 restrictions, that hasn’t stopped them from gathering together. According to Sarah’s mom, “Hundreds of teddy bears have been delivered to our home as presents for ‘Sarah Beara.’ Neighbors and friends have delivered dinners to our home every night for the past two months. People have donated paintings, drawings, artwork, and even written songs for Sarah.” Others have stood outside her window to wave and display signs of love/support. Sarah was even asked to homecoming and was able to attend via FaceTime.

If this is the first you’re ever hearing of Sarah Frei, there’s one thing Amy Frei, Sarah’s mom, wants you to know about her. She said, “Sarah loves life. She loves to learn about others’ lives, and she loves to share about her own life. She is always up for an adventure and has incredible confidence to talk to anyone and do anything… Sarah will do great things with her life; we have no doubt about that. She will be an example of strength, positivity, and love. She will be a force for good in this world. She will change lives for the better. She already has.”

This world needs more people like Sarah Frei – more people with a golden smile, an empathetic soul, and a massive, loving heart. We could all learn something from this young woman’s story of courage and hope. Become a part of the #sarahstrong community by: 

And remember to live in the now because when you think about it, it’s really actually pretty good.