The Becca Schmill Foundation was created in 2020 in memory of
Rebecca Mann Schmill by her adoring family.
Becca passed away on September 16, 2020 from an accidental drug overdose. She and a friend had purchased drugs that, unknown to them, were laced with fentanyl.
Becca was a beautiful and caring person with a gift for making those around her feel loved and appreciated. She was funny, adventurous and willful, and had a smile that could light up a room. As a school friend said of Becca: “She managed to make those around her smile even when she wasn't in our presence... She will always be loved and will always be in our hearts.”
Becca had a strong sense of equity and fairness. She traveled to Opatoro, Honduras as part of a medical brigade led by Community Health Partnership-Honduras - an experience that had a profound effect on her understanding of the world and her passion for social justice. No doubt Becca’s life pursuits would have centered around helping others.
But at 15, Becca was sexually assaulted. This trauma was followed by a cruel cyberbullying incident. There are many reasons why, in today’s complex and stressful social world. teenagers may try drugs. Becca’s particular journey was marred by traumatic events which led her to use drugs to dull her pain. First with marijuana, then with stronger drugs.
Becca had hoped to attend the University of Richmond starting in the fall of 2020. Instead, she deferred her admission so that she could focus on her recovery. She was planning to enter a residential treatment center on September 16th, but she and a friend wanted to try something new before she committed to her recovery. Unfortunately, the drugs they purchased were laced with fentanyl.
Becca’s story is a reminder of the vulnerabilities of adolescence, particularly in the age of social media. Today’s adolescents navigate a world that is bigger, faster, and more chaotic than that of past generations – a world that demands tremendous effort to find peace. It should be no surprise that they are more anxious and depressed than past generations.
The Becca Schmill Foundation was created because we believe our children deserve better. They deserve support services and legislative policies that are equal to the times they are living in. Every child deserves to grow to adulthood, unscarred by their youth.
Becca deserved better. It is the mission of the Becca Schmill Foundation to advocate for better.