MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Bree Ann Camacho lost her sister, but she gained new purpose.
The 18-year-old college freshman plans to honor her sister’s memory by starting a foundation to support the families of victims of drunk driving.
“I honest to God feel I was put on this earth to be an advocate against drunk driving,” Bree Ann told CBS 4’s Lauren Pastrana in an interview Wednesday, just two days after man accused of killing Kaely was convicted. “Anyway that we can possibly spread the word about her and the consequences of drinking and driving, I’m willing to do.”
It’s been almost two years since Kaely, a student at Southwood Middle school who loved to cheer and dance, was killed in a violent crash.
“She was always happy. Big heart. Beautiful girl,” said Angela Camacho, Kaely’s mother.
Kaely was in the back seat of the family van when a drunk driver, speeding through the South Dade busway, plowed his SUV right into the van, ripping it in half.
Sandor Guillen was behind the wheel of the Range Rover.
On Monday, a jury found him guilty of DUI manslaughter, vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of a crash involving death.
The Camachos were there for the verdict, a mixture of relief and heartache plain to see on their faces.
“It was actually like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders,” Angela Camacho explained.
Despite the conviction, both Angela and Bree Ann said they hoped for an apology.
“I honestly feel like he was not showing remorse,” Bree Ann said. “I think that’s not even human.”
A portion of SW 162 St. in Palmetto Bay was named after Kaely, a constant reminder of the young life cut short.
Her spirit is felt each year as her loved ones gather to walk in her honor along with the families of other DUI victims.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving is a cause now close to Angela Camacho’s heart.
Like her daughter, her life has new purpose.
“I think I will dedicate the rest of my life to bringing awareness to this cause, this crime,” Angela said. “It’s 100% preventable.
Bree Ann wants to start a non-profit organization called “Kaely’s Kare” to provide financial and emotional support to families coping with loss.
Guillen faces up to 30 years in prison.
His sentencing date has not been set yet.