Paul L. Caron

Friday, March 7, 2014

Death of Sarah Tran

TanSarah McQuillen-Tran (SMU) died last Friday at the age of 34:

Sarah Elizabeth McQuillen-Tran passed away peacefully surrounded by family and friends on Friday, February 28th at the age of 34. She had a strong spirit and heroically fought a relapse of leukemia over the past year.  Sarah received bone marrow transplants from her brother Paul and her sister Kathy.  She received excellent medical care from both Johns Hopkins Medical Center in Baltimore and Baylor Medical Center in Dallas.  Sarah and her family received tremendous support and encouragement from her family, friends and the local community, especially her Fondren Family, (friends and faculty) at Southern Methodist University.  Sarah's family would like to thank Armstrong elementary school, Highland Park Presbyterian Church, and Highland Park United Methodist Church for their wonderful support, as well as the ministers of Baylor and the Music Fairy.

Sarah was born in Leidschedam, Holland in 1979. She went to school in England and Saudi Arabia, and attended high school in the USA and Philippines.  After graduating from high school,  she spent a year volunteering in the Philippines, India and Nepal before going to college at UC Berkeley. After graduating from UC Berkeley with a degree in Civil Engineering, Sarah and her college sweetheart Thuan Tran joined the Peace Corps and served in Guinea, West Africa. They were married in Oakland, California in 2004.

FarrahSophia, their first great love, was born in Oakland, California in 2005. Sarah and Thuan then moved to Washington, D.C, where Sarah attended Georgetown Law School and graduated Magna Cum Laude. She later Clerked for the Honorable Judge Timothy Belcher Dyk on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and worked for the Energy Group at Jones Day law firm.

Sarah won her first battle with Leukemia at Johns Hopkins Cancer Research Center in Baltimore, MD.   She received a bone marrow transplant from her brother Paul in 2008, which enabled her to live a happy and healthy life for four and a half more years, and give birth to their second great love, Jimi Owen Tran in 2010.

Since January 2011, Professor Tran served as an Assistant Professor of Law at the Southern Methodist University, Dedman School of Law in Dallas, Texas. She specialized in Intellectual Property, Regulatory and Environmental Law. A nationally recognized legal scholar, Professor Tran published articles in many of the leading U.S. law journals. During the 2012-2013 academic year, Professor Tran served as a Fellow in the SMU Dedman College Interdisciplinary Institute. Professor Tran was equally dedicated to her teaching.  She taught Property Law and other courses to over one hundred students at the law school.  She also taught courage and determination amongst other qualities to her students, often conducting lectures from her hospital bed at Baylor Medical Center via Skype. ...

Sarah is survived by her husband Thuan and their two children FarrahSophia and Jimi Owen, her mother Jacqueline Conci and husband Michael Conci of Auburn, California and her Father Roland McQuillen and wife Gabrielle Kelly-McQuillen, of Ireland.  Sarah is also survived by her brother Paul and his partner Heather, her brother Mark and her sister Kathy, her husband Mo and her niece.

A memorial service celebrating Sarah’s life and spirit will be held on Saturday, March 15th at the Highland Park Methodist Church on 3300 Mockingbird Lane in Dallas, Texas at 10:00 a.m. A potluck lunch will follow the service.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests you consider making a contribution to the Tran Children Development Fund.

Sarah was a compassionate, affectionate wife and a devoted, loving mother. She will live on in our hearts as a shining example of brilliance, tenacity, an adventurous ‘can do’ spirit, dedication to family, students, fun, love and life.  Au revoir until we meet again.

For more of Sara's amazing story, see  SMU Property Law Professor Battling Leukemia Teaches From Hospital Bed. (Hat Tip: Babette Boliek.)

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