She planned to enter Howard Community College this fall.
Sitting at the kitchen table with his wife and their 24-year-old daughter, Heather, Tom Stebbins described how Sarah's death had left the family shattered.
He said his wife has been unable to work, and he has put his business as a contractor on hold to stay home with her. Both parents are in therapy to help them cope with the grief, he said. They have tried to occupy their time by creating a garden behind their home in Sarah's memory.
"Unless you've experienced the loss of a child, you cannot imagine how it affects the entire family," he said.
The delivery of the state's bill, along with the excruciating details of the crash, just added to the pain.
Tom Stebbins said it wasn't a matter of money, which the family could afford.
"It's about the insensitivity of the whole thing," he said.
That was how it struck Sarah's maternal uncle, Greg Greisman, who contacted The Sun.
Gischlar, the highway administration spokesman, said the letter never should have gone out. "It was completely a billing error on our part. Our deepest apologies go out to the family."
He said the agency will send a letter of apology, and the family will not be expected to pay the bill.
"We will assure this doesn't happen again," Gischlar said. "We are going to triple- and quadruple-check before anything goes out."
Sending the bill out under the governor's name was a routine use of state letterhead, he added. "It had nothing to do with the governor's office at all. This is on SHA."
Stebbins said the call from Mobley on Friday didn't take away any of the pain, but he appreciated Mobley's promise that steps would be taken to keep the same thing from happening to another family.
"That's what this is mostly about," Stebbins said.
Sarah's father hopes to begin speaking to groups of young people soon about the dangers of texting and driving.
But he said he's not ready yet.