Family of Utah woman killed by husband release statement, say she is ‘shining light’
Aug 14, 2023, 5:14 PM | Updated: 10:13 pm
ANCHORAGE, AK — The family of a Utah woman killed in Alaska released a statement after the woman’s remains were found in a drainpipe near a trail and her husband was taken into custody, accused of murder.
Saria Hildebrand was found dead, shot in the head on Aug. 10. She had been reported missing on Aug. 6 by her husband, Zarrius Hildebrand who is now charged with her murder.
Friends held a vigil for Saria on Monday night, with family calling her a “fun-loving, good person.”
“She was just fun and beautiful, fun to be around, adventurous, loving,” Meredith Barney, Saria’s mother, told KSL TV. “She was just the light in the world for me.”
Saria’s family posted the following statement on Facebook:
“Saria Barney was an amazing young woman. No one could imagined (sic) that this would happen to her.
As we try to make sense of this tragedy we want to thank everyone in Anchorage for their support to Saria’s family. Thank you to Anchorage Police, most notably the detectives who took the Missing Person report seriously. Thank you to the Army National Guard and Army leaders who have communicated with us and to the platoon members who have joined us in the search for Saria. We are grateful to the public who have spread Saria’s name online and on the ground. Thank you to the media for your prompt response and work to share Saria’s story.
Saria is a beloved daughter and step-daughter. She is a cherished sister. She is a shining light to her grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles. Saria is loved by a large extended family and network of friends spanning many cities and states. Saria is a genuine, caring woman that is independent, courageous, and brave. She was a good student in training to become a combat medic and preparing for her future.
We trust Anchorage Police are capable in handling the investigative portion of the case. We trust Army CID are actively cooperating and lending support. We are hopeful this leads to a just prosecution.
We ask for privacy as our family continues to stay active in the investigation and gathers together to remember our beautiful Saria. We will provide updates as possible.
Thank you for thinking of Saria and supporting our efforts.”
A GoFundMe set up for the family to cover travel expenses to Alaska as well as the cost to bring Saria’s remains home to Utah can be found here.
*KSL TV does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisors and otherwise proceed at your own risk.