On Saturday the 3rd of June, 21-year-old Sara Zelenak lost her life in the London Bridge terrorist attack.
In memory of her beloved best friend, Liv Cootes writes for Mamamia…
Sarz and I have been close family friends since birth. Our mums went to school together in Berwick, Victoria and both had baby girls around the same time. I never had an older sister or even a female cousin my age, so that was where Sarz belonged in my family.
Even though we grew up in different states, we spent every holiday together in Noosa. Sarz would help me pick up rubbish off the beach all day, just because she knew it was something I was passionate about. We lived for the snow cones on Noosa Main Beach and Toblerone ice cream at Massimo’s Gelateria after.
My earliest memory of Sarz was how kind she always was. She included my little sister in all our activities, even though she was three years younger than us. When my sister and I fought (as little kids do), she never got involved or picked sides. She always wanted us to get along.
Sarz never said a bad word about anyone; she was too busy enjoying her life. She was a pure delight to be around and such a good role model for us.
After returning from a year overseas in London, my partner Matt and I moved to Brisbane. Sara and I were both so excited to finally be living in the same state together, we had so many plans.
We couldn’t have done our move without her. Sara did our viewing with the real estate agent while we were still in Melbourne. When we finally arrived she spent days helping us unpack. She worked so hard and nothing was ever too much for her. She always wanted to help and didn’t leave until the job was done.
After we were all settled in, Sarz literally had her own bedroom downstairs. We got a two-bedroom apartment with a spare room that she frequently stayed in.
Sarz was a morning person, and we weren’t. I really miss her early morning wake up calls, shouting “Livvvyyyy bear! Wake up!”, the second she heard some movement upstairs.
Sarz spent so much time here with us in the lead up to London, and Matt and I are so grateful for that. After she left, our home didn’t feel the same anymore.
She really was a pure treasure, taken away from us all too soon. She was kind, caring and provided endless laughs. She had a sense of humour like no other.
Life just radiated from her. Sarz never said no, Sarz was such an optimist! She took every opportunity thrown at her and just loved life.
She could always see the positive in every situation. She was wise beyond her years; often telling me to “just chill”, giving me perspective on all situations.
My family and I will always remember Sara for the rest of our lives. Sara bought joy to all our lives, nothing was more important to her then family and close friends. I feel absolutely privileged to spend my childhood and adolescence with her, watching her blossom into an amazing woman. Without Sara’s support, love and care I would not have managed through the difficult times in my life. She was there holding my hand when I needed it most.
I will do the same for her family, just as she did for me.
Heaven will be a better place with Sara there.
Rest in peace beautiful girl, you will be dearly missed by all.
There's a GoFundMe page set up for Sara's family. If you would like to donate, click here. In addition, Healthworks Cleveland are holding a fundraiser to show their support for the family. For more information, click here.