JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Rabbi Yaakove Fisch said he was the one who had tell teenager Orly that her mom, Esther Ohayon, 57, died at the scene of an accident Friday night.
The condition of the 16-year-old girl hit at San Jose and Haley is improving, and her Rabbi is working to create change at the crosswalk where she was struck, but breaking the news was tough for Fisch.
"It was obviously one of the hardest things I've ever done, probably the hardest thing," said Rabbi Fisch.
Orly was in critical condition at UF Health up until Sunday when her status became stable. Even though she's recovering from the accident and dealing with the loss of her mother, Rabbi Fisch says she is staying strong.
"She continues to be optimistic about her future so that gives people around her optimism," said Rabbi Fisch.
Rabbi Fisch says the teenager also lost her father in Israel 13 years ago. Orly has some family in Jacksonville and Rabbi Fisch has visited her almost every day since the accident. He says the teenager is a junior at Wolfson High School.
On social media there is an outpour of support for the teen. The Southern NCSY organization, a website dedicated to Jewish teens, has put Orly on the front page of their webpage, drawing hundreds to read her story.
Posts on a 'Nothing Can Stop You' Facebook page for Orly shows people singing her songs, writing encouraging messages and wishing her well.
The Ohayon family has created a fundraising effort online for the Esther and Orly. They've raised nearly $50,000 dollars in two days. For more information click here.
First Coast News