Almost $19,000 has been raised to help pay the medical bills of a Cobb County teenager who was seriously injured in a vehicle collision near Kell High School in northeast Cobb on Jan. 12.
The 16-year-old crash victim, publicly identified only as Emily, was driving east on Jamerson Road about 7:15 p.m. on Jan. 12 when her car was hit by another vehicle being driven by 17-year-old Kell High School student Kayleigh S. Neste, of Kennesaw.
Police said Neste was driving west on Jamerson Road and lost control as she approached Nevilly Way, crossing into the eastbound lanes and hitting the front of Emily’s car.
Neste got out of her car, with the help of bystanders, before it caught fire. She was pronounced dead at WellStar Kennestone Hospital, per investigators.
Emily was trapped in her vehicle and extricated by firefighters. She was also transported to Kennestone Hospital in Marietta for treatment of serious injuries, police said.
An online fundraiser through GoFundMe had generated just over $18,800 of its $20,000 goal for Emily’s medical bills by 1 p.m. Monday.
Peyton Miller created the fundraiser on Jan. 13, Emily’s GoFundMe page shows.
“Thank you to everyone that has been donating!,” Miller wrote on the page. “We appreciate all of the support and wanted to let everyone know that Emily is so strong and doing so much better! Major surgeries have been completed for now and she is looking 100 times better. Again, thank you for the support and keep donating!”
More than 400 donors pledged toward Emily’s medical bills through the GoFundMe fundraiser, and more money is being collected for the cause elsewhere.
On Tuesday Jan. 21, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., the Zaxby’s restaurant at 2756 Sandy Plains Road, near East Piedmont Road in northeast Cobb, will donate 10% of sales to Emily’s medical expenses.
The Zaxby’s fundraiser was mentioned in the latest weekly community newsletter of Cobb County Commissioner JoAnn Birrell.
“Recently, there was a fatal accident along Jamerson Road that involved two minors,” Birrell’s Jan. 17 newsletter stated. “The surviving driver is currently in the hospital being treated for serious injuries related to the accident. The Zaxby’s … is hosting a fundraiser for Emily, who is currently in the hospital working to heal from her injuries.”