BLOOMSBURG, COLUMBIA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Wednesday night a community remembered the life of Erica Shultz by doing what she loved: singing.
“She loved to sing. One of the memories that we wanted to hold dear to us tonight is that her voice would be heard in heaven and that she could hear our voices back to her and singing her favorite songs,” said Pastor Kelly Kocher-Ross.
26-year-old Erica Shultz was loved by many. Nearly 100 people attended the drive-in candlelight vigil at her church, Trinity United Methodist in Bloomsburg.
Pastor Kelly Kocher-Ross led the ceremony and spoke on behalf of Shultz’s family. Ross says a group of women at the church organized the prayer vigil to thank everyone who tried to help find Shultz and supported her family.
“The tragedy that happened… the community still mourns. So we wanted to have a time with the community to lift up Erica and to lift up Erica in prayer,” said Ross.
Shultz loved helping others. She was actively involved with local social services organizations. She was on the autism spectrum and won several medals for running and walking in the Special Olympics, but Ross says it wasn’t about the medals for Erica, it was about making friends.
Shultz was on her way to becoming a global messenger for the Special Olympics so she could inspire other athletes.
Ross says Shultz’s legacy will be one of love and light.
“Erica should be remembered as a light. She should be remembered as a person who loved everybody she came into contact with. I’ve never known a light this bright before,” said Ross.
Churches across Bloomsburg will ring their bells at 7 p.m. Thursday evening in memory of Erica Shultz.
In lieu of flowers, they are accepting donations for local causes that were important to Erica like the CMSU Advocacy Group and Special Olympics of Columbia and Montour counties. Donations can be made through McMichael funeral home in Benton.
A GoFundMe was created to help Erica’s family with the funeral and memorial costs.