Community helps Tishomingo family touched by tragedy

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TISHOMINGO, OK-- Johnston County residents are eager to help a family in need after 11-year-old Kari Baker and her 12-year-old sister, Kelli, died following a car accident June 27th.

Kari's fourth grade teacher, Ryan Crowe, had the idea after the accident to see bracelets in memory of the two girls and donate the proceeds to their family to help with funeral expenses.

"It was very near and dear to my heart. And then, of course hearing what happened to Kelli, I knew we had to do something."

Kari and Kelli were on their way to a softball tournament with their mother, Cathy, when according to an Oklahoma Highwat Patrol accident report their vehicle was struck by a semi in Beckham County. Kari died at the scene and Kelli passed away July 2. Their mother survived the crash.

Now, the community is helping the Baker family pay for funeral and hospital expenses through a group called "Bracelets for the Baker Girls."

"We are selling bracelets for Kari and Kelli. The bracelets that we're selling are five dollars. And I've made some pink and black ones because I heard that was their favorite color," Sloan Sloaver, a good friend and teammate of Kari's, said.

The makers said they chose bracelets because they wanted the people who cared about the girls to be able to carry around a reminder.

Crowe and his wife thought it would be a good idea to sell the bracelets just to raise awareness and keep a good memory of the girls that you can always keep with you. And so far they've sold pretty well.

The group made 1,800 bracelets and has already sold half of them online and at Memorial Elementary.

"Bracelets for the Baker Girls" is also planning to sell t-shirts through their Facebook page and at Summer Nights in Tishomingo this Friday.