Ask any parents and they will tell you their biggest nightmare is the thought of one of their children dying, whether through natural causes, an accident or even worse, through a murder.
And that is what happened to the family of Tom Bearson of Sartell – father Greg, mother Deb, sister Maddie. Their worst nightmare materialized with agonizing horror and grief, when Tom became the victim of a killer in the Fargo-Moorhead area last September.
Bearson’s unsolved murder sent shock waves through the area, in his home town of Sartell and beyond. Here was an outstanding young man, brimming with talents and personality-plus, freshly starting college, ready to prepare himself for a productive and happy life. Then, just like that, his life was viciously taken from him in the middle of a September night.
Parents and siblings who lose a loved one never fully recover from the grief. It remains an aching wound that never quite heals. Fortunately, people in Sartell and beyond reached out generously with sympathy and compassion to the Bearsons. Such community connectiveness can help lessen the sting of sorrow.
Many parents of children who have died such untimely deaths also find some solace in efforts to honor the loved one who died, and that is what the Bearsons and their supporters have done. They have started what is called the Tom Bearson Foundation, which is an excellent way to honor the memory and the positive influences Tom exerted on so many who knew and loved him. (See related story in today’s paper.)
Establishment of the Bearson Foundation is a doubly good idea because it not only honors the memory of a fine young man but because it will help other youth in the form of increased athletic opportunities, scholarships and school-safety enhancements. It’s a win-win for everybody involved and yet another way to improve quality of life in Sartell. It is, the Bearsons, said a way to give back to the city and larger area from whence so much support came from in the wake of Tom’s untimely death.
We encourage our readers to spend some time perusing the testimonials, photos and videos on the Tom Bearson Foundation website (www.tombearson.org). That site will give people a well-rounded idea of what an energetic, talented, fun-to-be-around guy that Tom was. He will always be missed by those who knew and loved him, and this foundation is a great way to keep his memory alive. After perusing that website, we can assure readers they will feel as if they knew Tom in person, even though they never had the chance to meet him in person.
We also encourage readers to donate whatever they can to the foundation’s worthy goals. Tom would be very proud of those goals. He would be smiling in approval and maybe even cracking a gentle joke or two.