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‘Look out heaven. Here she is’: Hundreds remember London Harrell at celebration of life ceremony

Updated: Jul. 8, 2019 at 4:02 AM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Hundreds packed the gymnasium at Spring Valley High School during a celebration for life ceremony for 21-year-old London Harrell.

Harrell was a graduate of Spring Valley High School and a student at the University of Central Florida.

She was walking near the University of Central Florida campus in late June when she was hit by a driver who investigators say was impaired.

Loved ones from the community showed up to the celebration of life ceremony wearing bright colors and floral patterns, capturing London’s spirit before she was laid to rest.

Holding back tears, Mike Harrell read a letter at the ceremony from his son Maddox, that he wrote for his sister, London Harrell.

“The best 17 years, 10 months, and 11 days of my life was when my sister was alive,” Harrell said. “My kids will never know aunt London. But when they ask I will tell them how amazing, funny, kindhearted, crazy as hell, smart beautiful, and just the closest person to me.”

As the community leans on each other, friends and family say they will forever remember her bright light.

Lynn Grady-Cosby, a family friend said, “London has affected us in some kind of way, and in a good way. And I will carry her forever in my heart. Because at the end of the day what we have learned was this [Live Like London]”

When asked “What does Live Like London mean to you,” Audrey Martin, another family friend said, “Live each day to your fullest. We get one life to live and we all need to live it, we can’t dwell and be unhappy we all need to be cheerful, we need to have spirit like London.”

London’s family asks for continued prayers and support through this difficult time.

“We are heartbroken, we are numb,” Paula Cobb, London’s mother said. “But we also know that London wants us to charge on and to live life to the fullest. Never be afraid, and always have some adventure on the calendar to look forward to. Baby, I’m so proud of you and all I can say is look out heaven. Here she is.”

London’s mom and stepdad told WIS in an exclusive interview, they also want to use their experience to try to advocate in the medical field and help make it easier to get second opinions.

When it comes to Victim advocacy, London's Stepdad, Dennis Brantley says they want to find ways to improve communication between advocates and victims.

All members of London Harrell’s family wanted to praise the community, whether in Florida, or South Carolina. They add the community has taken them in and they have appreciated their generosity.

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