Friends and family members of a 21-year-old Whittier woman killed in a car crash last week thanked the Whittier community for an overwhelming show of support and kindness during a car wash held Sunday to raise money for funeral expenses.
Britney Reyes died at the scene of the crash, which took place about 4:15 a.m. Thursday on Mar Vista Street near York Avenue, police said.
In an effort to help grief-stricken family members take care of services for Reyes, a car wash was held Sunday at the corner of Whittier Boulevard and Mills Avenue.
“People have just been so wonderful,” said Reyes’ grandmother, Lupe Garcia. “It’s overwhelming and wonderful at the same time. The family would like to thank them.”
Countless cars stopped by, most giving much more than the suggested $10 donation, resulting in thousands of dollars raised.
“Total donations have exceeded $10,000,” Reyes’ aunt Judy Reyes said following Sunday’s event. “It was amazing.”
About 30 family members and 100 friends met with people whose lives had been touched by Britney Reyes, as well as other members of the Whittier community who did not know her but were touched by her story and wanted to help, the aunt said.
Judy Reyes said she was especially impressed by a young woman named Lauren Coats, who was an acquaintance of Britney Reyes but had fallen out of touch in recent years.
Coats arranged for a local Jamba Juice store to donate drinks to sell at the fundraiser, then stayed on to sell them and help with the car wash, the aunt said. “She was just amazing.”
Judy Reyes said the communities’ kindness in recent days has been invaluable.
“It gave me the support and strength I needed,” she said. “I really want the Whittier community to know how much the Reyes and Dewberry families appreciate it.”
A longtime Whittier-area resident and graduate of Sonora High School in La Habra, “Britney was a very cheerful, bubbly person,” her grandmother said. “She was always there to make people happy. She was loved.”
Services for Reyes had not been scheduled Sunday.