Remembering His Kind Heart: Adam Boehme


Lia Ghirardi and Marley Gandee

“Live like Adam, Love like Adam” is now a phrase we apply to our everyday lives. He loved all those around him deeply, and he lived life to the fullest.  He always had a huge smile on his face, and he always spoke with excitement.

Adam Allen Boehme was an incoming senior at Sahuaro. Adam was one who was very involved at school. He ran cross country and track, played the trombone in Sahuaro’s band, played soccer, and played football as well. Not only was he a super star athlete, but Adam was a super star in the classroom. He was always the one to turn to when you had a question about the homework or if you needed just a little bit of help. Adam was a ball of light that glowed in the middle of a dark room. He could be having a bad day, but would still do anything in his power to help the person next to him, regardless of what he was feeling that day.

Unfortunately, the world took a negative turn. The air turned dry and hearts grew cold as the news about Adam came about. On Tuesday, July 26th, Adam was involved in a collision that led to his passing.  By Tuesday evening, across multiple social media platforms, the tragic news had been spread and the hashtag #LLA ( live like Adam, love like Adam, long live Adam ) circulated to show support.

At Adam’s memorial, guests came dressed in white or purple to show their love and support for Adam and the Boehme family. Attendees were greeted with a beautiful card that read: “Adam was always smiling and ready to help anyone. He enjoyed a good bike ride, run & hike. Soccer, football & playing the trombone were some of his favorite things to do. But his love for others and his love for his family were what he treasured most.” An abundance of love and support flooded into the memorial service. The room filled with friends, family, teammates, teachers, coaches, and classmates who attended to keep Adam’s name and legacy alive. He was so special, that even our rival school, Sabino, showed their support by taking a team photo holding up a sign that stated: “Prayers 4 Adam”.

Many people had kind and heartfelt words to say when asked about Adam. Senior Myles McAllister described him as a kind person. “I have known Adam since sixth grade…we became friends through school soccer at Gridley…he was a good teammate. He was passionate and he was kind and friendly.  He was always helpful, that’s why I considered him family.” Evan Reuter, one of Adam’s best friends said, “There’s been so many memories… I looked up to him… he was my best friend, we’d often go running at Sabino…” Football and soccer teammate Larry Acuna talked about how Adam would always make him laugh. “We were at football practice and he was so skinny that everything looked huge on him and it was so funny and always made me laugh.” Acuna also mentioned that Adam had taught him some life lessons. “He was always really nice and selfless…it made me think about others and not just myself… He was for the team… he was very passionate.” Adam’s previous girlfriend and teammate Payton Gandee talked about how astounding of a team player he was. “Adam was an amazing friend and teammate who loved running with his whole heart. He always had a smile on his face and would never let the team energy fall. No one will ever be able to replace the amazing teammate and friend he was.”

Sahuaro boy’s soccer team photo

Coaching staff of Adam throughout the years talked about their experiences coaching Adam and how special he was. Cross country and track coach Melissa Slade stated: “Adam was super excited to run because it was something he was good at. And he could be just Adam. It helped him grow in confidence. Adam has no idea how good he was going to be. I was 100% confident that we would send him off to college to run. We discussed several schools, including Division I schools. Adam was a super hard worker, and he had a thing about shoes… so Adam bought shoes for cross country online and they were these really heavy clunky shoes, and then we were talking about it because he hated them so much, and we decided that he would buy another pair and those weren’t the best shoes either… so we were getting ready to buy his third pair of shoes for cross country, and he was super excited about getting new shoes. Because of that experience the cross country team was talking about following in his footsteps because we talked so much about shoes with Adam. And so as a team we are looking to follow his example. And following those dreams of running and competing well and doing well just in our lives. So that is our cross country theme this year  – to follow our dreams.”  Another cross country coach, Coach Handshoe said, “So my favorite memory isn’t just one memory, it’s memories. I enjoyed working with him as an athlete because of his personality and commitment to the sport. He would do anything you asked even if he didn’t understand it at first. He was willing to go above and beyond for his success and for the team. He would always ask about college and what it would take, and you could see he would take everything I said in and internalize it. He wanted to be run, and he wanted to be good. It was his driving force for being out there on the hot days, wet days, and basically any day that others would consider hard to work in. He was a great kid and did everything and anything. We will use that model to teach others how to be and what to strive for.” This year would have been Coach Lou Miller’s fourth year of coaching Adam. He started coaching him his freshman year of football and track, and their relationship only grew. He said, “I don’t think I have a favorite memory, just lots of memories… how helpful and useful he was… We called him butter knife, and his brother Abraham was switchblade… because he was part of the knife family, but not quite a switchblade yet.” Adam had a lot of promise for his future, whether it be life or sports, Adam was going to great places. Coach Lou was asked what Adam taught him in the years he was his coach. To this he replied, “to be kind, generous, gracious, and to care about everything. He taught me what this world was about and how we should treat people.” Adam’s soccer coach, James Lopez said his favorite memory of Adam was,”…the energy and the enthusiasm he had every game that we went out and played, he competed so hard… he was awesome on the soccer field.” After his time with Adam he said, “I learned that persistence pays off.   He was persistent in everything he did, he always came by my classroom, and kept me on top of what I was doing…”

Sahuaro Cross Country team photo

As many people know, the Boehme family is one of many siblings and family members. Sisters Hannah and Jojo remember him by keeping memories alive. One of Jojo’s favorite memories with Adam was their sophomore year. “It was sophomore year and we were on Zoom… he had gotten his trombone and he was going to sit down to play and fell over in front of the class…it had all of us laughing…Adam was one of my best friends since the day I met him. He had such a great personality and was always so happy. He always put himself before others and wanted them to be happy. He volunteered to help people all the time. He would take shifts for people that needed them covered, and he would ALWAYS go above and beyond selling stuff. He loved fundraising and he was so good at it. We would always have a challenge when we fundraised for track to see who could sell more and he would always win. I have no idea how he would always get more people, but he did and I never won. I’m sure everyone misses Adam always selling the most in every fundraiser, but overall, Adam was such a great and caring soul and I will never forget the memories I had with him. I am so grateful Adam is now in the presence of God and he’s safe. We will never forget you Adam Boehme, and we will love you forever #LLA.” Sister Hannah Boehme expressed that Adam helped her in ways she didn’t know was possible. “He helped me see a lot of things…once he passed away I saw how people thought about him and how much love people had for him and how much of an impact he had on others. He had so many friends that cared about him.” His brother, Matthew Boehme, said his favorite memory of Adam is, “Playing chess with him. I’d always try to beat him, but he’d always put me in checkmate, no matter how hard he’d try.” Matthew described Adam as, “Fun, energetic, quick-paced, kind, caring, loving, with a hint of mischief.” Matthew expressed how much Adam loved everyone, “The way he helped others, he put others before him… he treated everyone the same.”  Another of Adam’s brothers, Aaron, said, “A life lesson he taught me is to keep the ones you love close, never leave with an argument or a fight… he also was in foster care and he went from house to house until he got to our mom and dad’s house and we were finally together. I’m just happy that we were together after years… Adam was the best kid, he really was and he deeply cared about everyone. I love and miss him every single day, I hope he’s living great up there and he was just doing what he loves. I love you, Adam.”

Adam’s mother, Cindy Boehme showed great appreciation to all of those who have been there to support her and the Boehme family through this difficult time. “We can’t tell you how humbled and honored our family is out of the tremendous generosity and all the outpouring love and support we have received from all of Adam’s teammates, coaches, Sahuaro High School administration, Gridley staff, Secrist staff, TUSD, friends, coworkers, teachers, and so many other school communities. Our family thanks you all from the bottom of our hearts. We were all so blessed to have had Adam in our lives and family for the time we did. Adam was fiercely competitive in everything he did from academics, to soccer, football, track, cross country…We wish we could have seen him run one more race. Adam’s soul left this earthly life on July 26th, 2022. He has finished the race, ran his last mile in record time and won. He is home. He is in heaven. With love, the Boehme family.”

Adam was a ball of light that glowed in a dark room. His kind heart and pure soul will be remembered by many. Always remember to live like Adam and love like Adam. #LLA