If you drive into western St. Lucie County by the fairgrounds, you might see a bright new display on the side of the road.
There is a beautifully decorated Christmas tree, but it’s not just for celebrating the holiday. It’s there to honor two girls who were very special to that community.
Britney Poindexter, 17, and Santia Feketa, 18, were killed in a crash near the tree’s location earlier this year.
Santia’s father, Stewart Feketa, visited the tree Tuesday afternoon with dozens of friends and family members.
“She’s looking down now, her and Britney probably singing rocking around the Christmas tree right now,” Feketa said.
Friends and family have been decorating the tree with things that remind them of the girls, pictures, and hand written messages.
“It says I love you, I wish you could be with me,” Feketa read.
Feketa visits the crash site frequently.
“I do not go to the cemetery very often at all, that's a very difficult place for me to go….When I’m here I feel like this spot is the stairway to heaven. I feel like she’s here even though I know she’s in heaven. I feel peace here,” Feketa said.
So, on his family’s toughest Thanksgiving yet, Feketa got an idea.
“Both families were hurting as we reached out to the Poindexters. We were all feeling the burn I’ll call it. Burn to the max.”
Thanksgiving night, he bought a Christmas tree. He placed it at the memorial Saturday. He decorated it with two angel tree toppers and some lights.
He left but drove back by a few hours later.
“When I came back, this tree was 2/3 decorated. Ornaments started coming from all places, signed and personalized, like a display of love. I was really excited to see that.”
That show of support keeps growing.
Keely Oaks was close friends with Britney and also knew Santia.
“We did personalized photos and a clear globe,” Oaks said. “It’s a good nice place to come sit, too, and reflect on the girls and memories you have with them.”
The decorations continue to show up, showing the Feketas and the Poindexters that they’re not grieving through the holidays alone.
“It does bring a little peace to my heart to see that, the love that’s being shared,” Feketa said. “She would have been proud.”