CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A Chesterfield woman died just months before her wedding when her SUV hit a tree on Genito Road.
Natali Castellanos-Tyler two-year-old daughter was with her, but was not harmed. She and Craig Tyler were planning a wedding for July. Now, the family says Castellanos-Tyler's wedding dress will be the last dress she will ever wear.
Her husband and children are clinging tightly to the memories that they all shared.
"Natali was like the daughter I never had," her mother-in-law, Janet Tyler, said.
Castellanos-Tyler's life was cut short Saturday when she and her daughter, Elisa, were traveling home from a birthday party. The accident happened miles from their Chesterfield home. Elisa suffered only minor injuries, but she is much too young to understand that her mother won't be coming home.
"The hardest part is just taking it day by day, and just knowing that one day I'm going to have to tell them that they don't have a mother to grow up with," said Craig Tyler.
A mother of three and native of El Salvador, Castellanos-Tyler married her husband two years ago at the courthouse. Before the accident, they were planning a big ceremony set for this July. The wedding invitations just arrived at their home the same day she lost her life.
"Instead of looking at honeymoon plans, we are now having to plan a funeral," said Janet Tyler.
"Single father now, of two and I just, I don't know, right we don't know, buddy," said Craig Tyler said.
With the love of his life gone, Craig is leaning on his family, friends and the community for support.
"She was working a full-time job, and just starting her career, and her husband is still trying to go to school and better himself and working, but it's not enough in this day and time with two little children," said family friend Paula Mitchell.
Though Natali is gone, family members say her memory and legacy will live on through the lives of her children and the many lives that she touched.
"She was a giver, and what I'll miss the most about her is her hugs," Janet Tyler said.
A fund has been set up at Wells Fargo Bank in Natali E. Castellanos-Tyler's name. Donations can be made at any Wells Fargo bank to help pay for her funeral. Her funeral is scheduled for Thursday at Bliley's Funeral Home, 6900 Hull Street Rd. in Richmond. There will be a viewing at 1 p.m., followed by the funeral at 2 p.m.