Florida teen killed after tree falls onto car remembered by loved ones: 'I’ll forever miss you'

Family and friends remember the teen who was killed when a tree hit her mom’s car. 

Kayden Avera was killed after a tree fell on the car she was riding in last week in Windermere. The tragic incident occurred on Reams Rd., south of Summerlake Blvd., as inclement weather was moving through the area. The 14-year-old was in the back seat while her mom and brother, who survived, were in the front. 

"She had a really close bond with her brother, and they would fish together," said Mary Verbinski, a friend of Kayden’s mother. "She was so grounded and down to earth and loved her brother, loved her mother, loved her grandparents and her dad and just, just an amazing young child that we lost too early."

Verbinski set up a donation page to help with funeral expenses, as this tragedy was unexpected for the family. She said Kayden’s mother is staying strong through this grief. 


"There aren't words to describe that loss," she said. "She's being unbelievably strong, and we pray. She's being there for her son, who was also in the accident with them, and she's just finding the courage to proceed on." 

Now, friends have come together to remember the teenager by setting up a memorial at the crash site. Messages read, "Thank you for being you, Kay. I love you forever." Another read, "I love you, Kayden. I can’t believe you’re gone. I’ll forever miss you."

The teen was a student at Windermere High School. The principal sent a message out to parents saying in part: 

"I know I speak for the entire Windermere High School community when I express the grief we feel at the loss of one of our own." 

While school is out for the summer, there is grief counseling available for students.