Suffolk County police have deemed criminal the death of a 23-year-old Huntington Station woman whose body was found in the Froehlich Farm Nature Preserve last Thursday, police said Monday.
The woman was identified as Sarah Strobel of East 6th Street in Huntington Station. Her body was found just before 9 am in the preserve off West Rogues Path in Huntington Station, according to police.
Detectives from the Suffolk County Police Department’s Homicide Squad started an investigation after a person walking at the preserve noticed the body off the side of the path and called police, the SCPD said last week.
The path was a favorite hiking spot of Strobel’s, according to 22-year-old Taylor Friedman, who said the young woman was one of her best friends. Friedman helped organize a candlelight
vigil with Strobel’s other friends, which was held last Friday.
“It’s still really fresh and raw for all of us,” Friedman said in a phone interview on Monday from Haven Hair Spa, where she works as an assistant manager. “This is my first day back at work, and I feel like I’m in a cloud.”
Friedman and Strobel visited the preserve a handful of times, and they both shared hiking as a favorite hobby, Friedman said.
“Sarah was a free spirit and a wise soul,” the friend said. “She lived her life to the fullest and made the best of any situation whether it was bad or good.”
Rebecca Stander, a childhood friend of Strobel’s, also remembered the 23-year-old fondly. In a statement Stander said Strobel was her “best friend since third grade,” noting how the two would do their homework together. Strobel’s favorite cereal was Fruity Pebbles, she said, and her favorite perfume was Lolita Lempicka.
Strobel, a 2008 Walt Whitman High School graduate, was also remembered by the South Huntington School District.
“We have little additional information at this point but do know that our hearts go out to Sarah’s family during this difficult time,” Superintendent David P. Bennardo said in a statement posted on the district’s website. “The members of our South Huntington learning community join in mourning Sarah’s passing and keep her in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”
Strobel loved music, both Stander and Friedman said. Her favorite bands included Incubus and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Friedman said.
“I want the world to know how loved she is,” Stander wrote, “and that beautiful rock star will always remain alive in my heart.”