A Texas teen who died last year was thrown from a vehicle seconds after taking off her seatbelt for a selfie. Now, her grieving parents are committed to reminding everyone to buckle up—hopefully sparing another family the pain of losing a loved one.
Kailee Mills, 16, was heading with three friends to a Halloween party near her home in Spring when the car she was in rolled over, killing her. The two other teens were wearing seatbelts and survived.
“We know if she had her seatbelt on, she’d still be here,” her father, David Mills, told The Independent.
The father also told KRIV that his teen daughter was ejected from the vehicle and died instantly. She’s believed to have taken her seatbelt off moments earlier to take a selfie with a friend. According to KTRK, authorities suspect the driver was speeding and lost control.
“All I kept saying was, ‘It’s not real, it’s not real,'” mother Wendy Mills recalled.
Since then, David and Wendy established the Kailee Mills Foundation, a non-profit which provides car window decals that remind people to buckle up.
They’ve also recently partnered up with the state Department of Transportation for a new “Click It or Ticket” campaign which will include a display of 929 shoes of every size and shape. The shoes will represent the 929 people who died in Texas last year while not wearing a seatbelt.
David said, “Our daughter’s shoes are the pink ones that we placed there to represent her. They call them ghost shoes. I can almost see all the people standing here.”
[Featured Image: Kailee Mills/Twitter]