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Community holds vigil for woman who was killed helping friend escape domestic violence

Posted at 4:52 PM, Mar 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-06 23:21:09-05

BALTIMORE, Md. — Family, friends, and members of the Digital Harbor High School community gathered to honor the life of 21-year-old Kaylyn High, who was killed while helping her friend escape a domestic violence situation.

"She was the best friend you could have. She would protect you," her grandmother Sharon Butler said.

"I am so proud of her because she touched so many people, so many people, and if she were here she would be crying tears of joy to know that she has had such a positive impact on so many young people," her mother Toya Sykes-Coates said.

She went by many nicknames: Kay, KK, KStacks and was known endearingly by her family as Mimi. She had a passion for helping others, whether it was helping coach the volleyball team or supporting a loved one.

"Everybody asks why I have the picture of her on my back instead of one the front and that's because Mimi always have everyone's back," aunt Kendra Paylor said.

RELATED: Woman killed helping friend escape domestic violence

Her last act on earth, helping rescue a friend from physical abuse. Her mom says it's a testament to how she lived.

"She was beautiful and smart and strong and courageous. She was the epitome of love," Sykes-Coates said.

She hopes that everyone who knew her learns from that love.

"Kaylyn is gone and we're never going to see her again. We're never going to see her again but we can work for her. We can continue to keep her legacy alive," Sykes-Coates said.

To do that, her family started the Kay Day Foundation. They will raise awareness for domestic violence and give support to victims and survivors.

"Kaylyn, when those candles go out, your life is still gonna shine," father Dante High said.