Sarah Leyrer, 41 of Seattle, died on Saturday, August 29, 2020, following a car crash in which her beloved cat Yeller was also killed. Sarah led a life that mixed equal parts fun and adventure with championing human rights. While a foreign exchange student in Uruguay, Sarah discovered her calling to the "good trouble" of exposing and combating injustice. She pursued it in her professional life as an admired attorney who advocated for low-income people and immigrants, and as an activist for race and social justice. At the time of her death, she was a Senior Investigator for the Seattle Office of Labor Standards.
Sarah was a gifted artist and volunteered her creative and professional talents to numerous organizations, including The Bikery, Casa Latina, La Resistencia, and The Northwest Justice Project. She loved being outdoors and took pleasure in biking, hiking, camping, and travels with friends. She was a fearless athlete, competing recently in roller derby and bike polo.
Sarah was hilarious, mischievous, and fun, yet serious and passionate about what she believed in. She cared deeply for animals and her many friends. She is survived by her husband Mike Katell, her mother Becky Ballantine, her father Bill Leyrer, her sister Amy Lawrence, and her stepfather Bill Ballantine, as well as many aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, and colleagues. Sarah leaves an indelible mark in the hearts of all who knew her. Donations in her honor can be made to La Resistencia, or to the Seattle University School of Law Scholarship Program.
Published in The Seattle Times on Sep. 6, 2020.