Makeshift memorials have gone up in memory of two East Texas teenagers who died in a weekend wreck.
Two sisters, 17-year-old Mergimtare and 14-year-old Liradone Bojkaj, were killed on Sunday when the SUV they were riding in overturned. Their brother, 19-year-old Murteza Bojkaj, is listed in good condition at a Tyler hospital.
The driver of the vehicle, Hava Shala,33, and another passenger, Bennie Shala,37, were treated and released from a Henderson hospital a few days after the accident.
The community has come together to offer their prayers and support for this family who is well known in the area.
Normally, Sal's Italian Restaurant in Henderson would be open for business.
But for now, the restaurant is closed. A small sign is taped on the front door, asking for prayers.
The front porch of this family-owned business is covered in flowers, cards, candles, and stuffed animals; gifts left by members of the community who heard that the sisters who once lit up customers' faces had been killed in the accident.
Darla Williams is an eighth-grade teacher at Maude Laird Middle School and taught both Bojkaj girls.
"And you couldn't help but know the girls. I mean, Mergim was very boisterous and had an outgoing personality; she just never met a stranger, friends with everybody. Good girl," Williams said.
Mergim is described as outgoing while her younger sister Liradone came off a little shy.
"She's so sweet and helpful, hardworking. She just, you know, she just was a good presence. She just won you over with that sweet nature of hers. All the kids liked her, she made friends with everybody," Williams said.
Williams said both sisters worked at their family's restaurants. She said Mergim spending extra time with her teachers who came in for dinner.
"She was so excited that we had come in and she wanted to tell us you know what the good stuff was and sat down. Of course, if you went into the restaurant, Mergim was going to sit with you," Williams said as a smile spread across her face.
"Mergim was a people person that wanted to be around you and was so proud of what her family was doing," Williams explained.
"Liradone is just, draws you in with her sweetness and her sweet helpful nature. Just two entirely different girls, but two loveable girls who have definitely made their impact on our community," Williams said.
As the family mourns the loss of their two daughters, they pray for the recovery of their 19-year-old son Murt.
"My superintendent as well as my high school principal went over to the hospital today to show our support and condolences to the family. It was amazing to see and humbling to us how grateful they were towards the support of the Kilgore and Henderson community," said Maude Laird Middle School Principal April Cox.
"They've warmed their way into people's hearts and they're going to be missed very much by all of us," Williams said.
An account is set up for Mergim and Liradone at Citizens National Bank in Henderson. Donations will help the family pay for medical and funeral costs.
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