Earlier this week, a car crash claimed the life of a 19-year-old Cayuga County resident, and now her alma mater will host a candlelight vigil in her memory.
Late Monday afternoon, Cayuga County sheriff's deputies were dispatched to a car accident on Shepherd Road in the town of Brutus. Upon arrival, the sheriff's office said they discovered Kayla Marie Cox, of Brutus, had crashed a 2008 Dodge Dakota pickup truck into trees on the side of the road. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
At the time, the sheriff's office said Kayla was the lone occupant in the truck, and there was no indication that another vehicle was involved. However, the investigation is ongoing.
Thursday evening — shortly after calling hours are held — family and friends will gather on the lawn of Weedsport High School to remember Kayla. The teen graduated from the high school last June.
According to a press release from the high school, at 8:30 p.m., there will be an outdoor ceremony on the north lawn near the varsity softball field behind the cafeteria. Guests were asked to wear purple or pink, Kayla's favorite colors, and to bring a lawn chair for seating.
Kayla was currently enrolled at Onondaga Community College, where she was studying business. Both Weedsport High School and OCC are offering grief counseling as needed over the upcoming days.
"On behalf of the college, we want to extend our sincere sympathy to the family and friends of Kayla," OCC spokesperson Amy Kremenek said. "This is obviously a very sad, sad event, and the college shares in that."
Born in Syracuse, Kayla was the daughter of Donald Len Cox and the late Michelle Lynn Tanner Cox. Michelle died battling Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 2007, shortly after Kayla turned 8.
According to an obituary from White Chapel Funeral Home, Kayla was employed at Bed Bath and Beyond and Sally Beauty Supplies. She was an avid pet lover and enjoyed spending time with her family and friends.
Calling hours for Kayla will be held 4 to 7 p.m., Thursday, at the funeral home on Erie Drive in Weedsport. Services will be held privately at the convenience of the family with a burial at Maple Grove Cemetery in Jordan. Family and friends will also gather at 5 p.m. Friday at the Cato Fire Station on Route 370 in Cato.
In lieu of flowers, Kayla's family has asked that donations be sent to Fun Beginnings 2 Preschool in Weedsport or the Finger Lakes SPCA in Auburn.