Senior project to honor the late Jacquelyn Watts

A Columbus North High School senior is organizing a garage sale to benefit the Bartholomew County Humane Society in memory of a woman who was known for her love of animals.

Rachel Cialdella has organized the Cause for Critters garage sale that will be held from 8 a.m. to noon March 24 in the fellowship hall of First United Methodist Church, 618 Eighth St., as part of her senior project. Cialdella’s stepfather, the Rev. Howard Boles, is pastor at the church.

The fundraiser for the humane society is in memory of Jacquelyn Watts, 33, an Indianapolis woman whose body was discovered March 4, 2017, on a sandbar in the Flat Rock River. Watts, who graduated from Columbus East High School in 2002, died in an accidental drowning after attempting to save a small dog that had wandered near the Flat Rock River.

Cialdella said she decided to help out the humane society after talking with Jacquelyn Watts’ mother-in-law, Sandy Watts, who attends First United Methodist Church. Cialdella said she hopes to raise at least $500 for the organization, with most garage sale items ranging from $1 to $10.

Monetary donations also will be accepted from individuals who want to help support the humane society.

For more on this story, see Wednesday’s Republic.

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Matt Kent is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at 812-379-5712 or