Family, friends gather to remember young mother killed in crash

BIRMINGHAM, Ala (WIAT) — Dozens of balloons were released into the sky at sunset Thursday in memory of 19-year-old Derenesha Reynolds.

Reynolds was killed after investigators said she lost control of her vehicle and struck a pole along Lakeshore Parkway Monday afternoon.

Balloons, flowers, and hand-written notes are all at the crash site where loved ones circled.

“It’s my best friend. So the fact that I can’t call her in the mornings and tell her about something that happened, it’s just deep,” said Kyra Stone, a longtime friend of Reynolds.

Friends held hands and comforted one another while they listened to prayers and songs in Reynolds’ memory.

A forecast of rain and wind couldn’t dampen the spirits of those who knew her.

“This should just show how special Dera was to us. My heart is just so full,” said Reynolds’ aunt Olivia Barlow.

Barlow didn’t have to dig too deep to find the bright side. She told the crowd she felt blessed for the 19 years they spent together.

The balloons released were purple and white; her favorite colors, according to friends.

Reynolds will be laid to rest Saturday at noon at South Elyton Baptist Church.

“I would just tell her I will see you again one day,” Barlow said.

Birmingham Police are investigating the wreck and said it appears speed may have been a factor.

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