Community remembers Bluffton teen killed in hit-and-run - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Community remembers Bluffton teen killed in hit-and-run

BLUFFTON, SC (WTOC) -

Hundreds filled the Bluffton High School gymnasium Wednesday night to remember a Bluffton teenager whose life was taken too soon.

Grace Sulak was killed in a hit-and-run wreck on I-26 in Calhoun County on Saturday. She was 14 years old.

In fact the memorial service was supposed to be held at the Sauls Funeral Home, but they had to move it to Bluffton High School because they knew that hundreds of people would show up.

“We’ve got a community that’s really hurting and it’s very obvious, but the support that we have in our school community and the ability to talk with one another, to grieve with one another, and really to celebrate the life of Grace has certainly helped us heal,” said River Ridge Academy Principal Gary McCulloch.

"I'm so overwhelmed by the response. Like I said a hundred times in the last few days, she's the best person I know, and I just didn't know everybody else felt the same way,” said Grace’s mom, Heidi Hanson.

The night was about remembering Grace in every way, even down to her favorite chocolate.

"She seemed to have limited space for healthy food, but plenty of space for chocolate and ice cream,” Hanson said.

But a love for junk food didn't stop the 8th grader from being a rising star on the Bluffton High cross country and track teams, and a friend to people young and old.

Friends, classmates, and Grace's twin sister shared memories and stories that spoke to who Grace was and the legacy she will leave behind.

"In 14 years, Grace Hanson Sulak made an impact in people's lives that most likely I'll have to live to a 100 to accomplish,” said Lowcountry Community Church Youth Pastor Samuel Robinowich.

And much like receiving the baton Grace would hand off in track meets, the pastor challenged everyone to carry on her legacy of love and encouragement and to pick up where she left off.

"I do ask you to say, 'God, what do I need to do? What's my next step?' Grace is finished, but now it's our turn to begin,” said Robinowich.

As Grace’s family and friends grieve, her best friend and her best friend’s mother are still recovering from the car accident, and South Carolina State Troopers are still on the hunt for a vehicle they believe caused the crash that took her life.

Troopers are searching for a white Dodge Ram 2500 Crew Cab pickup truck with damage to the right front bumper and fender area. If you have any information, call police.

Copyright 2016 WTOC. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly