Memorial fund established for young Minnesota musician stabbed to death in the Netherlands

Sarah Papenheim drumming with the Bernard Allison Group in Bonn, Germany last year.

Sarah Papenheim drumming with the Bernard Allison Group in Bonn, Germany last year. YouTube

Friends of Sarah Papenheim have begun online fundraising efforts to pay the costs of returning the body of the Twin Cities woman to the U.S. and to cover her funeral expenses.

Papenheim, who had been studying at Erasmus University in Rotterdam since 2016, was found stabbed to death by local police Wednesday. Police have arrested her roommate, a 23-year-old cello player, who is soon to be charged in her death.

Papenheim planned to return home to Andover, Minnesota, for winter break, according to the Star Tribune. And for the 21-year-old blues drummer, coming home meant playing music—in this case, a gig with Brian Naughton at the Schooner Tavern in south Minneapolis.

Before heading off to school, Papenheim had become a fixture in certain local music circles—there was a time you could catch her behind the kit at Shaw’s in northeast Minneapolis on Monday nights. And she’d won fans and champions among older musicians in the Twin Cities. Jellybean Johnson, who helped forge the Minneapolis Sound in the ’80s as the drummer for the Time, described her as a daughter to KSTP, saying, “I loved her unconditionally.”

“It's going to be very expensive for travel costs for the family and to bring Sarah home, not to mention any funeral and burial costs involved,” reads the GoFundMe page, which seeks to raise $40,000 for Papenheim's family. “Your gift will help alleviate some of the financial burden of this tragedy.”

The page has raised $22,000 since its creation yesterday, and can be found here.