Free family photo shoot honors Columbia photographer

Thursday, October 9, 2008 | 7:10 p.m. CDT; updated 8:55 p.m. CDT, Thursday, October 9, 2008
Sarah Becking with her two children Adelaide, 6, and Jack, 3.

COLUMBIA — Sarah Becking was the kind of woman who centered every day around what was most important: her family and her art.

Becking was 36 when she died of carcinoid cancer three months ago. She graduated from Rock Bridge High School and MU, and she was a freelance photographer who took pictures of families and did contract work for MU's athletic department.

Hold That Hug, a free family photo shoot commemorating Becking, will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday in Stewart Park. Seven professional photographers will be on hand to take photos of families — a fusion of the two things Becking loved most.

After the event, the photographs will be available at Becking's online store. The proceeds from printing sales will be donated to Pictures of the Year International. Becking worked with the program.

"It is an opportunity for moms, who are often behind the camera, to be photographed with their children," said Amy Enderle, a friend of the Beckings.

This time last year, Becking finally agreed to let Enderle photograph her with her children.

"She kept saying 'I hate being on that side of the camera,' and then we agreed to get together at Stewart Park, and I never got back to her. I'm still so torn up about that," Enderle said.

Enderle first met Becking at 50-Minute Photo. Becking used to work in the photo lab and often printed Enderle's pictures.

"We had a relationship over the cash register and then we realized we lived so close to each other," Enderle said.

Kim Wade first met Becking through Enderle. Becking's six-year-old daughter, Adelaide, went to preschool with Wade's daughter.

Wade and Enderle's children attend Grant Elementary School with Becking's daughter and son. The two women meet often on the playground before the end of the school day. "We're still so sad, but then we look at their kids and they're doing great. She prepared them well," Enderle said.

"When Sarah found out about the cancer it was so out of the blue and was already in stage four," Enderle said. "The immediate thought would be 'I don't have much time,' but she still had such life and grace."


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