Parents of dead North Fort Myers teen advocate against speeding

Reporter: Taylor Petras Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:

A North Fort Myers teen and her grandmother were killed in a car crash in Highlands County on Christmas Day.

Destiny Franz, 16, and Judy Mounts, 56, died after investigators said a car tried to pass a driver going around a curve and slammed into Mounts’ car head-on.

“Never in a million years did I ever [think] I would bury my child,” Mitchell said. Because somebody was in a hurry to nowhere, they took my mom and they took my child with them.”

Franz’s mother and Mounts’ daughter, Mitchell, and Franz’s step-father, Martin Santiago, are vowing to keep Franz’s memory alive forever. They told WINK News they want to start a campaign against speeding in their daughter’s honor Thursday.

“She was really smart,” Mitchell said. “She was a good kid, never got in trouble.”

Santiago, said “She was outgoing and loving.” Now, Christmas will never be the same with two losses that cannot be returned or replaced.

“It’s the worse news you could ever receive from a stranger to tell you your family is wiped out in an instant because someone made a mistake,” Santiago said.

Franz was supposed to graduate high school this spring. She wanted to be a nurse.

“Her spirit was so alive,” Santiago said.

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