It was 10 years ago, on April 4, 2003, when Kyrsten Elizabeth Studer, 14, and a group of friends were walking along state Route 304 in Hubbard and a drunk driver plowed into them.
Kyrsten later died from her injuries.
But family and friends are planning a big event this weekend to make sure her memory lives on.
“We’re trying to live for her, make every day count, live life to the fullest,” said Janine Bellino, a friend of Kyrsten.
Helping others in need has been the goal of The Kyrsten Elizabeth Studer Foundation. This year, the organization’s focus is prom with Kyrsten’s Kloset prom dress giveaway.
“She was a girly girl, so I think this is fitting for her because she was such a girly girl,” said Kristina Angelo, a friend of Kyrsten.
For weeks, the foundation has been collecting dresses and will give them away, free of charge, on a first-come, first-serve basis. There is only one stipulation.
“The girls can come, try on a dress, pick out a dress, all for free. All they have to do is sign a pledge that they won’t drink and drive on prom night,” said Sarah Studer, Kyrsten’s sister.
“Don’t drink and drive so we can prevent what has happened to her,” Bellino said.
There also will be a Chinese auction and bake sale on the day of the giveaway. The foundation is seeking more prom dress and auction donations and can be reached by clicking here.
Kyrsten’s parents said they are touched seeing everyone come together to make a difference in Kyrsten’s honor.
“We just feel very blessed to be her parents. We are her parents and everyday we say we are very lucky because no one else had her, she was ours,” said Bryan and Jenifer Studer.
Kyrsten’s Kloset will be held from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday at the St. Patrick Parish Center in Hubbard.