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20 Year Old Lancaster Native Killed in UTV Crash While Fighting Prescribed Fire


Selinde Downey Roosenburg, age 20, passed away as a result of injuries sustained as a passenger in a UTV rollover. She was working on a prescribed fire at the Richland Furnace State Forest.

We may be comforted to know that she died doing what she loved; and that she surely wore a beaming, tired smile in the moments before the accident. Her last gift to this world was to give life through the donation of her organs. Our sparkling, vibrant daughter, sister, cousin and partner would have wanted this tragedy to bring life and joy to others.

Lindy was born in Lancaster, Ohio on 10 April 2000, but grew up a barefoot explorer in the woods outside Amesville. From birth, she was a spirited child who confronted the world on her own terms. She attended West Elementary, Athens Middle School, and Athens High School and was a member of the Athens Marching Green and Gold and the Athens Swim Team.

Selinde settled on Forestry after two years at Ohio State University, but when learning changed she decided to experience life rather than merely imagining it from the classroom. In the fall Selinde attended an All-Women Wildlands Firefighting Course in Washington State. Working at Zaleski State Forest reinforced her decision to become a Wildlands Fire Fighter and Forester. She had been accepted into the best Fire Science program in the country, with a generous scholarship, to finish her training at University of Idaho.

Lindy was looking forward to learning all she could about fire and bringing her knowledge back to the woods of SE Ohio. Lindy was beautiful without knowing it, strong-willed yet vulnerable, bursting with energy and enthusiasm, yet quiet and introspective. She was a fiercely loyal and loving young woman, with a humor so quick and dry that the unsuspecting only caught the pun or barb if they saw the twinkle in her eye. She lived her life with an inspiring liberation, like wearing white shrimper boots on OSU campus in defiance of the standard attire. She rejected pretension and would not tolerate drama. For her, the days were for experiencing life to the fullest, making other people laugh, and becoming a hero to her community.

Boomer loved animals of all shapes and sizes, filling our lives with rabbits, ducks, dead bluebirds and wiggling snakes, while spoiling the family dogs at every opportunity. She played guitar, fiddle, and trumpet; but mostly she sang, announcing her presence before she arrived and gracing quiet moments with her joyful voice.

Selinde is survived by her parents Willem Roosenburg and Kate Kelley, brother Dirk Roosenburg, Darwinparents Mary Nossek and Geoff Baker, grandmother Carol Kelley (Bryn Mawr PA), aunts (Alex Woodard, London England; Eleanne Roosenburg, Acton MA), uncles (Brendan Kelley, Seattle WA; Ian Kelley, San Diego, CA), cousins (Esme and Phoebe Wessel, Asheville NC; Jordan Kelley, Ocean City NJ), her partner Kees Van Dijk (Lancaster OH), and many, many dear friends.

A memorial service will be held on April 10th 2021 at 11am by live stream at <http://tinyurl.com/selinde>, followed by a 1pm procession along S. Shannon Ave in Athens, OH. Additional information is available at the memorial website <https://www.forevermissed.com/lindyofthewildlands>. In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Selinde’s name to The Athens Conservancy (P.O. Box 2281, Athens OH 45701). The funds will be used to set aside land in Selinde’s memory, where the public might enjoy the Appalachian woodlands she loved so dearly. Arrangements entrusted to SCHOEDINGER