OWENSVILLE, Ohio - One of the aid workers killed earlier this week in Afghanistan grew up in Owensville, Ohio.
Cheryl Beckett, 32, graduated as valedictorian of Clermont Northeastern High School and later Summa Cum Laude from Indiana Wesleyan University.
Ms. Beckett spent the past six years as a health and humanitarian aid worker in Afghanistan.
She was one of 10 people killed in a remote region of northeastern Afghanistan earlier this week.
The killings are being claimed by the Taliban saying they believed the team members were spies preaching Christianity.
U.S. officials say the Taliban stopped the medical team on a remote road, led them into a forest and robbed them before shooting and killing them.
A statement by Ms. Beckett's family reads as follows:
"Cheryl loved and respected the Afghan people. She denied herself many freedoms in order to abide by Afghan law and custom. Her international co-workers and the Afghan Nationals with whom she served loved her. She was honored to be included in this most recent three-week medical journey to the remote populations of Northern Afghanistan.
The wickedness of terrorism is being conquered through daily acts of mercy. Peace in Afghanistan can be achieved by the establishment of just laws for all people and the continued sacrifice and selfless love of people working together. Those who committed this act of terror should feel the utter shame and disgust that humanity feels for them. We share this pain with those who continue the difficult and dangerous work to which Cheryl committed her life. We, as a family, will continue to love and pray for the Afghan people. We pray that Cheryl’s life and work will inspire existing and future ministries of mercy to press on."
Memorial services are being planned at Woodland Christian Church in Knoxville, Tenn. and Christian Fellowship Church in Evansville, Ind.
Donations may be sent to:
Woodlawn Christian Church
C/O Cheryl Beckett Memorial Fund
4339 Woodlawn Pike
Knoxville, Tn. 37920
Copyright (c) 2010 The E. W. Scripps Company