Sarah Winburn of Tahlequah, Oklahoma, earned a prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship, which is awarded to 1,000 of the most brilliant minority students across America each year. The Gates Foundation-funded program covers all expenses, from tuition to room and board. Winburn utilized the scholarship to attend New York University, choosing to return to the city where she was born and raised, before tragedy brought her back to Oklahoma.
Her brother, Jerry, was a year older than Winburn. He had been a student at Oklahoma State University for two short weeks before a fatal car accident. The proud member of the U.S. Army died at 19.