Tim Bosma's widow keeps husband’s spirit alive by giving back
Published Friday, August 9, 2013 9:03AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, August 9, 2013 11:17PM EDT
Three months after the disappearance and murder of her husband and “best friend,” Tim Bosma, Sharlene Bosma says she’s getting by with the support of friends and family -- and the desire to help other families who’ve been victimized by homicide.
In a lengthy interview with CTV’s Canada AM, Sharlene Bosma said that following the devastating death of her husband in May, she leaned on family members and a close-knit group of friends to help her get through the initial grief and shock of losing her partner.
“We have a lot of family, and they have been absolutely amazing. We’ve been very, very good at supporting each other,” she said. “And we have a huge network of friends … we have a tight-knit group of 30. We’re this sort of community within a community, and a lot of that is because of Tim.
“There’s always somebody to talk to.”
Tim Bosma’s story captured national attention after he disappeared on May 6 after taking two men on a test drive of his pickup truck.
The burnt remains of the 32-year-old Ancaster, Ont., man were discovered eight days later on a southwestern Ontario farm. Two men have been charged with first-degree murder in Tim Bosma’s death: Dellen Millard, 27, and Mark Smich, 25.
Sharlene Bosma said she continues to see parts of Tim in their two-year-old daughter, especially in her daughter’s dimpled smile.
“She gets this sort of cock of the head and this sort of half-smile that’s kind of crooked, and I go ‘Oh no, I know where that’s coming from,” she said, with a laugh.
She said her daughter sometimes asks about Tim, and she tells her that he’s died and will eventually explain it in more detail when she gets older.
In part, it was a desire to have Tim remembered by his daughter for something other than his death, which led Sharlene Bosma to create Tim’s Tribute -- a charity which aims to help other families who’ve lost a loved one through homicide.
The charity helps families similar to hers by addressing their immediate and trial-related needs.
Those who receive help will receive things like money for groceries and, once the trial begins, money to park near the courthouse and to pay for meals during the trial, she said.
Sharlene Bosma said she understands the needs of families who’ve suffered a loss because of homicide, as she’s still feeling the financial effects of losing her husband.
“We were very blessed with the trust fund,” she said of the fund set up in Tim’s honour following his death. “For me, that’s been paying my mortgage. That made truck payments for over two months and it buried Tim. If I didn’t have that I wouldn’t have been able to bury my husband properly.”
She added that while she knows many families do not have access to such a fund, she wants to be able to help address at least some of their needs.
“To say ‘I know what you’re going through and I can’t make it any better. I can’t make it easier, but I can take care of something for you,’” she said.
“With Tim’s Tribute, it’s about providing hope for us, hope for other people that in the worst time in your life something good can come forward from it.”
She added that it is her late-husband’s character that served as the main inspiration behind the charity.
“His kindness, his generosity, his willingness to help… those were all parts of Tim that we’re really carrying forward,” she said, noting that Tim worked as an HVAC technician and would often be out helping families late into the night, especially if they had young children.
“With Tim’s Tribute … we can continue that part of Tim. And that can become his legacy: something better than just what happened to him.”
The charity is hosting a concert in the Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ont., tonight. Tickets cost between $23 and $28, and the proceeds will go to the new charity.
Those who wish to donate to Tim’s Tribute can do so using PayPal at www.timstribute.ca or by cheque to Christian Stewardship Services, Suite 214, 500 Alden Road, Markham, Ontario, L3R 5H5.