Slain woman's family remembers her as kind, forgiving and full of dreams

Savannah Gold's mother, Sherri Gold, remembers her daughter with a smile and tears in equal measure.

Gold was allegedly murdered by one of her coworkers. Her body was found over the weekend.

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Savannah Gold's mother, Sherri Gold, remembers her daughter with a smile and tears in equal measure.

"Kind, empathetic, sympathetic, funny, bubbly personality; she’s an athlete, so she was, you know, really in great shape, and she loved to dance," Sherri said. 

"I remember her telling me a story, just a few weeks ago," Sherri said, pausing as she choked up, "...they went to this crowded bar and her and her friend were dancing and people just formed a circle around them because she was dynamite. I mean she was somebody you’d want to hang around with, she just had so much personality."

Savannah Gold and her mother sharing a silly moment together on Snapchat.

Savannah Gold's body was found floating in a pond on Club Duclay Road late Saturday night. It was the tragic close to what began as a missing person's report filed by Sherri on Wednesday after Savannah didn't show up for work.

She always showed up to work, in fact, she always showed up early. Savannah was a hard worker, she had two jobs and always picked up extra shifts at Bonefish Grill.

Sherri said she last saw her daughter on Wednesday at 5:15 p.m. when she left for work. She was dressed in her uniform and said, "Bye. I love you," as she passed her mom outside. Sherri said Savannah always told her she loved her. 

It was then that Savannah's father, Dan Gold, received a strange text message:  "hey i just [w]anted to tell you and mom i met a really great guy and we[']re running away together i love him and we[']re leaving to[n]ight i[']ll call you later when we get t[o] where we are g[oi]ng."

Within two minutes before or after that text, her brother, Chris Gold, was also sent a strange text.: "heyi quit im leavingwith my boyfriend i cant do this shit anymore im fine justwant to get away."

"I knew it wasn’t from her immediately, and that’s what you know, the hairs on the back of my neck went up," Sherri said. She and Savannah were close, "My daughter would have text[ed] me. She wouldn’t have texted her dad or her brother, we’re close, we’re really close."

So close, in fact, that Savannah had told her about the man who is now charged with her murder.

"She actually had a crush on him for a long time, and he never paid attention to her, then out of the blue he did, so she was flattered," Sherri said.

But, according to her mother, Savannah had a penchant for attracting broken souls; people who need "fixing." Sherri's motherly intuition told her that this man was no good.

"I don’t think he was one of the ones she wanted to save. He was just somebody she liked, she saw every day when she worked. We never got to meet him. He was supposed to come over for dinner one time and he bailed. And ultimately he just ended up lying to her all the time, he was just not a good person," Sherri said. 

Savannah and her coworker weren't seeing one another at the time, but they had become friends again. 

"I told her I thought it was a mistake for her to talk to him and I asked her to stay away from him. She said, 'It’s okay mom, It’s okay.' Because she’s always so forgiving, she’s like 'We’re only friends, nothing else is going to happen, believe me.'"

Savannah's older brother Chris also worked at Bonefish Grill. Sherri said Chris and Savannah were close and helped each other out. Sherri said that Savannah was a 'daddy's girl' and always wanted to make her dad proud.

And she did make her parents proud. 

She went to Douglas Anderson as an art student, she attended Wolfson and also Mandarin High, where she played lacrosse passionately. 

"She knows a lot of people in Jacksonville... a well-known kid," her mother said.

She had dreams; lots of them. 

Her interests changed daily, Sherri said, but she had recently been talking about going to welding school.

She had wanted to go to hair school and wanted to take classes at FSCJ and was interested in saving the environment. 

But those dreams will remain unfulfilled and Savannah will forever be 21 -- the number on her jersey and the number tattooed in roman numerals on her arm, according to her mother.

Sherri said she doesn't believe in the death penalty, "I’m a little bit more in the mindset that I just want him to suffer forever, I don’t want him to die, I just want him to suffer eternally, and it’s still not enough."

Because no amount of suffering will bring back her daughter.

"I just want my daughter back. I’m just crushed that he extinguished such a beautiful soul. She didn’t deserve that," Sherri said through tears. "He dumped her in a pond. So, she was alone, I wasn’t able to be with my baby when she left this earth. I don’t care anything about him. All I care about is her."

Savannah's GoFundMe made for burial expenses has exceeded the asked amount and her family says it will use the rest of the money to make a permanent memorial for her and will donate to causes near and dear to her heart.

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