The Herald reports:
A young Auckland local board representative has died suddenly, shocking fellow politicians who knew her.
Sarah Higgins, a real estate agent for Barfoot & Thompson and member of the Franklin Local Board, 24, died on the weekend.
Andy Baker, board chairman, said the death was an utter shock.
“She was the youngest member ever elected to this board and probably one of the youngest to be elected in the whole Franklin area over many decades,” Baker said.
“It’s left the local board absolutely devastated at her loss. This is a loss not only for the board but for the community. It’s such a tragic waste of a wonderful young life with so much to offer. Our thoughts are with her friends and family,” Baker said.
Higgins was on the board for a three-year term so was in her early 20s when she was elected, Baker said.
Sarah was a lovely and talented young person. I’d met her a few times at party events. Despite her youth, she had already carved out a successful career in business and politics. She had a great future ahead of her, and her death will leave many people shattered – her family and close friends most of all of course.
It’s a sad reminder that mental health challenges can affect everyone in society. People can appear great superficially, be popular, be successful – but still have issues underneath.
Sarah will be missed by all those who knew her. Rest in Peace.