Let the memory of Sarah be with us forever.
  • 51 years old
  • Born on June 22, 1967 in Raleigh, North Carolina, United States.
  • Passed away on March 27, 2019 in Raleigh, North Carolina, United States.

This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Sarah Rivers 51 years old , born on June 22, 1967 and passed away on March 27, 2019. We will remember her forever.

It is with great sadness we announce that Sarah Ann (Poole) Rivers, our dear daughter, mother, wife, sister, aunt, niece and friend, passed away on March 27, 2019. Sarah grew up in Raleigh and found her lifelong passion of theater by the time she was 16.  She quickly discovered that the wonderful qualities she inherited from her parents, organization, stubbornness, and a fantastic sense of humor, made her a great stage manager and so if she wasn’t at school or work, she was in the theater at Enloe High School or Raleigh Little Theater. Sarah was very proud to have been the Stage Manager for RLT’s first production of Cinderella, now in its 30th+ season.

Once bitten by the theater bug, Sarah decided there was nothing else she’d rather do with her life and so there was no better place than the North Carolina School of the Arts for her to go for college. Sarah truly enjoyed her years at NCSA and was lucky to have made lifelong friends and memories there before she graduated, in 1990, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Stage Management.

While at NCSA Sarah discovered she loved working on Operas, so after graduation she spent the next 5 years touring with some of the best opera companies in the country, including the San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera and Cleveland Lyric Operator.

Following her marriage to Paul Rivers in 1994, her son, Alex was born in 2000 and her son Jackson in 2002. Sarah was a devoted mother who loved being a stay-at-home mom for her two sons.  With her deep southern roots, two grandmas that showed their love through food, it is no wonder that Sarah eventually became a true foodie herself. Blending her love for her kids and family with her love for food, she and her sister Amy opened the first Dream Dinners store in North Carolina in 2004. Her desire was never to own a business, but instead to help families get back to the dinner table, talking and enjoying dinner together, just as she had done every day of her childhood.

The last year of her life, Sarah was a frequent volunteer at The Round Table Fellowship at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church, providing a “home-cooked” meal and open arms to people in her community that are housing and food insecure.

Sarah was a passionate person and put all her energy into things that meant the most to her. Sarah’s commitment to living her life on her own terms was admirable; she always beat to the rhythm of her own drum and did things on her own time.

Sarah will be joining her Father, Buddy Poole, Grandparents Nadine and Fred Kuper, and Dolly Poole, as well as her Aunt Patsy and Aunt Bobbie and a few friends, who all passed before her.

Left to carry Sarah’s spirit – and we will – are her husband, Howard Kushner; her mother Ginny Going, step-parents Tom Henderson and Lynne Poole, sons Alex and Jackson Rivers, sister Amy Crum and her husband Jim, step-sisters Meredith Henderson and her husband Darren Horton and Erica Henderson-Smith and her husband Jim Smith, Aunts Martha Brinson and Nora Kuper, Uncle John Kuper  and a scattering of nieces and nephews, Zach, Liam, Emma, and Jacob

The family wants to thank everyone for the outpouring of support, prayers, and thoughts during this difficult time. The love and kindness they have received is a testament to how many lives she touched and the kind of person she was.

We are waiting until things settle down but are planning on having a celebration of life at some point in the near future. Sarah was never one to rush things, so in her spirit we will “plan to make a plan” and let you know.

Please visit the Gallery and Stories Tabs on the site. Sarah's family would love it if you'd share your stories, memories and/or pictures of Sarah here.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Sarah’s honor to:

Raleigh Little Theater
301 Pogue Street
Raleigh, NC 27607
www.raleighlittletheatre.org/donate/

OR

Pullen Memorial Baptist Church
Designated for Roundtable Fellowship
1801 Hillsborough Street
Raleigh, NC 27605
www.pullen.org/donate/


Posted by David Cash on 23rd April 2019
Meeting Sarah at the rehearsals for the first season of Cinderella changed my life. After being chosen as Prince Charming, Sarah and I began sharing many memories together. From stage to other adventures with Bryan Putnam and David Logan, to NYC in the mid-80s with just Sarah and I, every day was filled with laughter and love. No matter the time that passed with only online and phone conversations, she has always remained a special friend. Thank you for the special tribute here. Looking forward to seeing you again. Love and prayers to all your family.
Posted by Sarah Veitch on 21st April 2019
❤️ love
Posted by Dorothy B Brolin on 11th April 2019
Sending thoughts and prayers your way. What a beautiful tribute and smile. You can see what an wonderful, kind soul she had, and how proud she made you. Remember that her light and love will forever live and shine in your hearts. Namaste, Dorothy
Posted by Kayelily Middleton on 11th April 2019
Ginny and Tom, It is with heavy hearts learning of Sarah’s transition, that we send our love and prayers. What a lovely tribute to Sarah you have written. Sounds like she lived her life to the fullest and has left a legacy of love. May peace be with you. With love, Kayelily and Dave
Posted by K Brooks on 8th April 2019
Please accept my deepest condolences on the loss of your dear loved one. The bible offers us much comfort in knowing that our heavenly father, "the God of tender mercies", is aware of your pain of heart and He cares for you. (2 Corinthians 1:3,4) May the memories you share with your family and friends comfort and sustain you through these difficult days.
Posted by Kathryn Tobias on 2nd April 2019
A beautiful life and smile. Thank you for sharing the stories--I will be thinking about Sarah and her family, especially Ginny and Tom, the ones I have been privileged to know and love. May you continue to feel the warmth of Sarah's smile and presence! Kath Tobias
Posted by Jane Jarvis on 31st March 2019
Sarah Smiles! and her smile will be forever in our hearts. When we moved to our first home in Raleigh, we were blessed to live next door to the little girl with the smiling face. Over the years we have watched her grow from that young child, proudly l holding her baby sister, Amy, to an amazing thoughtful, funny, gracious, intelligent woman. Her smile lit rooms whenever she entered. We will miss her, but rejoice that her long journey into death is over...that she is a peace, and is certainly enjoying her Heavenly family. You are missed, but will never be forgotten Sarah. You are loved by the Jarvis family.
Posted by Ceil Blackwell on 30th March 2019
Dear Ginny, I know your heart is broken, and I am so sorry. While you are glad she won't suffer anymore, you will miss her presence. I pray God will give you and your family the peace and comfort you need at this difficult time. Ceil Blackwell (Beth Swartz's mother)
Posted by M Campbell on 30th March 2019
Dear Rivers family, I am so deeply sorry for your loss. I hope that you can find comfort from the promises that God has in store for us in the near future. "Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life" - John 5:28 ,29.
Posted by Howard Kushner on 30th March 2019
in the words of e.e. cummings which have ever rung true for us i carry your heart with me(i carry it in my heart)i am never without it(anywhere i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done by only me is your doing,my darling) i fear no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true) and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows higher than soul can hope or mind can hide) and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)
Posted by Aj Johnston on 29th March 2019
I found myself moved to tears reading about Sarah's beautiful life and comments from the people who knew and loved her. What a beautiful smile! Sending love from Montana to all her family and friends. --aj
Posted by Charles Phaneuf on 29th March 2019
On behalf of the staff of Raleigh Little Theatre, I wanted to express my condolences to your whole family for the loss of Sarah. I only met her once - when Howard brought her to Cinderella 30 - to see the production that she so loved working on with Haskell. In that brief interaction she struck me as a kind, warm and energetic person. Hers is a huge loss and we will be thinking about all of you during this time.
Posted by Linda Bamford on 29th March 2019
My deepest sympathies to Sarah's family on this great loss of your beloved Sarah. I was at Raleigh Little Theatre last night and was flooded with memories of Sarah and how much she loved theatre and RLT AND how really good she was at it. I loved going to Dream Dinners and being welcomed so warmly by Sarah and Amy (I still miss making those terrific dinners). They were a great team and always fun to be around and very helpful. Sarah brought a lot of sunshine to so many. She will be missed.
Posted by Shirley Rivers on 29th March 2019
I am sorry for your loss. May your memories bring you comfort and peace. Praying for all the family.
Posted by Patricia Long on 29th March 2019
I am wrapping my virtual arms around Ginny and Tom at this tender time, knowing how your love carried Sarah through her illness. I hope that in time good memories with Sarah will come to ease some of the pain you feel now. God is always with you and with her, to comfort, sustain, and heal.
Posted by Sue Bass on 29th March 2019
What a beautiful smile Sarah had. We'll miss seeing it.
Posted by Samantha Daniels on 28th March 2019
never knew her but i am from NCSA family - was there till 82' then to NYC to pursue an acting career- just wanted to say - how lovely this memorial is and that i am sorry i didnt know her - glad she had a successful career doing what she loved and was able to have a family and be loved by a good man - many blessings - samantha daniels
Posted by John Kuper on 28th March 2019
We will miss you Sarah and you will always be in our hearts. We have a lot of wonderful memories, like when you were pushing Tracey in her stroller at the beach (you could barely reach the handles ) Rest peacefully your suffering is over Love Uncle John and Aunt Edie

Leave a Tribute