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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

In loving memory of Meadow Lily Sinner

TW: Brief mention of death and gun violence

I first met Meadow over zoom. I was conducting group interviews for potential new members of the Colorado Youth Congress (CYC). My attention immediately gravitated towards her. She had the biggest smile, the most contagious laugh, and more confidence at 14 years old than I could possibly imagine having at 18. She didn’t take herself too seriously and never turned down a challenge. I knew that she had to be a member of CYC and that she had the potential to change the world. 

Meadow was three years younger than me and was a brand new member of CYC during my senior year, in which I was an intern. I didn’t have many opportunities to connect with and get to know them, until this past summer. I returned to CYC as a summer intern and got to know Meadow more. During the third week of our internship, we all went to Lakeside together. I rode roller coasters and goofed around with her. I got to meet her mom and all of her younger siblings. The love they all had for one another was truly beautiful. 

 Meadow’s energy was unmatched and her strength was inspiring. We all shared our personal stories and Meadow’s still stands apart in my mind. I connected with so much of what she shared and I felt inspired by her resilience. She spoke about her life as if the worst was behind her. None of us could’ve known that the worst was yet to come. 

On July 28, 2022, at around 2:30 pm, Meadow and her mother, Lindsay, were shot and killed in their home. The shooter was Lindsay’s ex husband. He left behind four other children, younger than Meadow. We had just wrapped up our final intern call of the summer when it happened. We met in person, but Meadow was on zoom because they had rehearsal for Little Shop of Horrors right after our meeting. Her camera remained off until it came time for her team to present. When Meadow put their camera on, they immediately said, “I am so sorry to everyone who is seeing me right now. I had to serve ninja turtle realness today.” Bright green eyeshadow went up to her eyebrows and she had the biggest smile on her face. We all laughed hysterically. Meadow could pull anything off. 

The next morning, I got the call. I was in complete and utter shock. Horrible, unexpected things have happened in my life before, but nothing like this. Meadow was only 16 years old. They had a bright, full life ahead of them and it was stolen from them in an instant. The horror and tragedy of Meadow’s loss, however, has transformed into something beautiful. Nothing can ever justify what happened to her. It is impossible to find a reason. But in the absence of Meadow’s person, her energy lives on. 

When a star dies, it explodes in a brilliant burst of light. It goes out with a bang and can’t go unnoticed. The star itself may be gone, but it leaves behind something even more beautiful and bright. Meadow was a supernova. 

In the weeks following Meadow’s death, I felt an influx of love and support from my CYC community. We cried together, laughed together, we remembered Meadow together. Meadow taught me to be my authentic self. She reminded me that small acts of kindness and short interactions are just as powerful as large scale changes.

I am so grateful that I got to experience Meadow’s presence, even for a short period of time. I know that she is always with me, with us. A couple weeks after we lost her, I was feeling her absence so heavily. I went outside and saw the most magnificent double rainbow I have ever seen. I see Meadow in the sky, and I hope I always will. I am forever changed and will never forget my supernova.

Jadeyn Dugger

CU Boulder '25

Jadeyn is currently a sophomore studying Journalism, International Affairs, and Spanish. She loves to read, write, sing, act, and spend time outdoors. You can find her writing about social issues, her own personal experiences and stories, and whatever else sparks inspiration.
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