Amy Laura Bayley died tragically on Oct. 8, 2017. She was born on April 30, 1973 to Richard Leenders and Jaclynn Groen Leenders in Everett.

As most of the community will remember Amy was a victim of murder, the man that professed to love her took her life and disposed of her body on Canyon Road here in Kittitas County. Amy was missing for nearly three weeks before she was found, this on-going nightmare has left her mother broken and afraid. Though her killer has been convicted along with the accomplice this chapter for her family is still very much open.

When I received a call from Jaclynn asking for guidance to honor her daughter Amy, it broke my heart. Here was this woman suffering a loss that most could never imagine nor would want too. After hearing her story, I knew I had to find a way to honor Amy, allowing her family to begin a new chapter in their story of life.

Jaclynn, Amy’s mother has wanted to honor her daughter but was not only afraid but unaware of how to move forward. Faced with the reality of the investigation, trial and sentencing all but put Amy on the back burner, headlines described the incident, covered the hearings and sentencing and soon Amy was yesterday’s news. This is why I am asking our community to rally around this mother and brother to lay Amy to rest and prevent just another statistic.

Kittitas County residents are the kindest people I know, one of the strongest communities that can come together and show support for one of our own even though we may personally not know the family in need. The support and love that radiates through our amazing community would be very much appreciated at this service honoring Amy Bayley.

A church service has been scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019 at 11 a.m. at St. Andrews Catholic Church, 401 S Willow St., a luncheon will immediately follow with a graveside service taking place at Holy Cross Cemetery following the luncheon.

St. Andrews funeral committee will be providing the meal, it would be wonderful if those that can attend would let me know by calling 509-925-2902 in order to ensure enough food for all that are able to attend.

Amy’s accomplishments in life included being a certified firefighter in the state of California, a loving daughter, mother, sister and friend. She auditioned for “Star Search” just prior to the show’s cancellation. Her mom said, “she sounded like an angel when she sang.” Her brother Gabe remembers his sister’s big heart, kindness and trust in others, perhaps this is what led to her untimely death.

Amy is survived by her mother Jaclynn, and brother Gabrielle.

I would like to thank our community in advance for your thoughts and prayers as well as for the time you may offer to attend this service. Thank you to St. Andrews, Father David Jimenez, Barbara Johnson, Barbara Pickett, Maria Lundgren and the numerous Funeral Committee woman for your support of not only this family but for all who are grieving.

Thank you and God Bless.

Kelly Held is the funeral director at Brookside Funeral Home & Crematory in Ellensburg. Online condolences may be made to the family at www.brooksidefhc.com.

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