Mother of Strongsville crash victim: 'Hug your family and friends and tell them you love them'

Kailee Mayher (Source: Strongsville City Schools)
Kailee Mayher (Source: Strongsville City Schools)
Kailee's friends tied green and white ribbons on telephone poles in her honor. (Source: WOIO)
Kailee's friends tied green and white ribbons on telephone poles in her honor. (Source: WOIO)

STRONGSVILLE, OH (WOIO) - A vigil was held Friday for the 16-year-old girl recently killed in a Strongsville car crash.

It was held at Strongsville Commons.

People had the opportunity to buy green and white ribbons at the vigil for 50 cents or a donation. The money will go to the other girls who were in the car crash.

The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner identified the victim in the Wednesday night crash as Kailee Mayher, 16, a sophomore at Strongsville High School.

Police say six teenagers were in the car at the time, and of those, three other teens beside Kailee were hurt in the crash. Officers say the car went off of the street and struck a tree at 22659 Albion Road. Mayher was pronounced dead at the scene at 10:25 p.m. Wednesday.

More than 200 people came out to pay their respects to Kailee Friday night. They also prayed for the five other girls who were in the car crash and are still recovering in the midst of losing their friend.

"It's so tragic that this happened but the whole city is behind them and we're going to give our love and support," said Dolores Burlinghaus, the grandmother of one of Kailee's friends.

Through their tears and their grief, many of Kailee's friends sang songs for her as a part of the high school women's choir.

"She made an impact on every person's life. And we'll remember her and keep her in our hearts," said Isabella Alawan.

This priest who prayed with Kailee's parents Stella and Rick that night at the sight of the crash, spoke to the crowd.

"We're all part of this community, we're all here for a purpose. That purpose is to begin healing, to pray for one another, to pray for our girls," he said.

Kailee's parents looked out at the crowd from the gazebo, and lit candles in memory of their only child.

"Kailee was our everything, the light of our life. Our bright light that was extinguished way too soon," Stella Mayher said. "So please keep her memory alive. Talk about her, the memories you shared and how she affected your life. Hug your family and friends and tell them you love them."

Kailee's family thanked everyone for the support and asked them to pray for the other girls and their families, too.

Kailee's funeral will be on Tuesday at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Strongsville.

Police said drugs or alcohol are not suspected in the crash, but they said speed may have played a role.

The Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Juvenile Division will determine charges.

GoFundMe account set up for Kailee's family had already raised around $6,700 as of Friday night.

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