CARTERSVILLE, Ga - Family and members of the community spent Friday grieving for Sarah Beth Barnes, a Cartersville police officer, Navy veteran, and a mother of five. Officer Barnes, a 2-year veteran of the department, was killed in a car crash Thursday evening.
"When I think of Sarah Beth I think of what a wonderful mom she was, worked very hard, taking extra jobs to give her 5 kids a good life," said Cartersville Police Capt. Mike Bettikofer.
"She wanted to be an advocate for victims and help the community. It's what she's always done in her service to the Navy and service to law enforcement," said friend Matthew Goss.
Barnes was off duty Thursday evening, driving on Georgia Highway 6 in Paulding County when the Georgia State Patrol says she lost control of her car, crossed the median, where she was hit by another vehicle. Barnes died from her injuries. Her husband, Steve, is overwhelmed with grief.
"He's a soldier but it's hard when you lose the love of your life. he's being a rock for his kids but we all need to be there for him right now," said Goss.
Friends say Sarah Beth Barnes was a true hero to her family and to the community.
"The world is a little bit darker right now but I think heaven is a little bit brighter," said Goss.
Before working for the Cartersville Police Department, Barnes worked for the Cobb County Sheriff's Office.
Friends have set up a GoFundMe account to help the family.