Remembering Megan Roberts
August 03, 2011 - There's absolutely nothing that's even remotely fair or rational about the death of Megan Brittany Roberts.
|Megan Roberts, a 2009 OHS graduate, passed away on July 27. She was 20. (click for larger version)|
A 20-year-old woman with her entire life ahead of her is gone and no one seems to know why it happened. All they can do is speculate and wait for the criminal justice system to render its verdict.
But judging by what Megan's family and friends had to say about her, she wasn't the type of person who would want people to dwell on her tragic death.
Instead, she would want people to celebrate her life and focus on all the fond memories and touching moments she left behind as her legacy.
"Knowing Megan made me a better son," wrote friend Jaclyn Fedricks in an e-mail to the Leader. "I don't know where I would be today if Megan had not been a part of my life for she showed me true friendship and brought out the good in me."
"I had so many good times with you and I will forever be thankful (for) that and (for) being your friend," wrote Lauren Dial on the "Prayers for Megan" Facebook page. "You left such a mark on this town and world, and (you) will forever live on in our hearts."
Roberts, a 2009 graduate of Oxford High School, passed away on Wednesday, July 27 from the severe injuries she sustained after her father, Robert Brian Kelly, allegedly bludgeoned her with an aluminum baseball bat as she slept on the morning of May 9 (see related story on Page 1).
She was taken off life support on July 14 and remained in hospice care until her death.
"You think about the why, however, we may never know," said Sandra Bucklin, Roberts' aunt and duly appointed guardian. "You just have to figure out how you can come to terms with such an unfathomable act. Part of what I think gives us a little bit of consolation is that we know that Megan is at peace."
Everyone who knew Megan loved her as evidenced by the massive show of moral support she received on the Facebook page set up after the alleged attack. As of 6 a.m. Aug. 3, the page had 2,780 followers.
"Our family is so appreciative of the support that we've received from the public, from family and friends; even strangers have reached out to us in so many ways," Bucklin said. "I think social media is fantastic in that way. Although it's a terrible, terrible tragedy, social media allows us to reach out to so many people and connect."
So many people had so many positive things to say about Megan and so many happy memories to share. Words like vibrant, beautiful, funny, caring, brave, wise and smart kept popping up over and over again as people paid tribute to her.
"People use the word sweetheart to describe her," Bucklin said. "She had a very radiant smile. My fondest memories are of that smile."
"She would brighten the room when she walked in," wrote Anna Moses, a fellow 2009 OHS graduate and one of Megan's best friends since the second grade. "When you needed a laugh, Megan was the person to call. No matter what, she was always there."
"Megan was a lil' spitfire," wrote friend Nikki Tapscott. "I was lucky to have grown up with her and thought of her as my little sister. She had so much going for her . . . Her smile would make you smile no matter what kind of day you had."
A recurring theme in everyone's comments was what a devoted friend Megan was.
"I know that when I needed someone to talk to or needed help from (someone), Megan would be the first person I would go to," wrote Moses. "She was always there for her friends, which would have been difficult for any other person, (given) how many friends Megan has."
"I could sit there with Megan and not say a word for hours (while) laying out by my pool because there was no need for words," Fedricks wrote. "Not many people can do that with a friend and say it was a good day, but me and Megs could . . . Megan was my best friend. We have been through thick and thin. She was (the) little sister that I never had and she will always be with me."
"A lot of people just liked being around her," Bucklin said.
There's no denying that Megan made the most of her life in the short time she was on this planet.
When she wasn't busy studying business at Oakland Community College or waiting tables at the Hamlin Pub in Orion Township, Megan was quite an active, social person.
She enjoyed golfing, walking the dogs, visiting the beach, playing roulette at the casino, rooting for her beloved Detroit Red Wings, betting on horses at the racetrack and playing games at Dave & Buster's.
Spending time with her boyfriend of three years, Kevin McLean, was always a priority. The two loved going to the movies.
"Megan's choice was often a chick flick, but every once in a while, she'd let Kevin pick the movie," according to www.megansteam.com, a website set up to tell Roberts' story and allow people to offer her moral and financial support.
In the end, there's no denying that Megan was a very determined young lady and had she been allowed fulfill her potential, she would have achieved all of her dreams, which included a successful career, happy family and a large beach house in Florida.
"She always gets her way – no matter what," Fedricks wrote.
"There's no doubt that she was a fighter," Bucklin said. "That was just part of her spirit."
Megan is survived by her mother Julie, brother Christopher Roberts, sister Carolann Roberts, grandparents Doug and Karen Roberts and Teddy Grene, cousins Isabella, Isaiah, Jack and Scott, and boyfriend Kevin McLean.
She's preceded in death by her grandmother Carol Grene.
Funeral services were held on Saturday, July 30, 2011 at St. Lukes's United Methodist Church in Rochester Hills. Interment at Ridgelawn Cemetery in Oxford.
Suggested memorials to the Megan B. Roberts Special Needs Trust c/o Sandra Bucklin, PO Box 14841, Austin, Texas 78761. Arrangements were in the care of the Modetz Funeral Home in Orion Township.
An on-line guestbook is available at www.modetzfuneralhomes.com.
CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.