Family, friends gather to celebrate life of Georgia teenager

Image 1 of 7

Family, friends, and even strangers gathered Saturday night to remember the life of a Georgia teenager who died during dance practice.

A vigil was held in honor of 17-year-old Elyse Purefoy, who collapsed suddenly during practice for Arabia Mountain High School's dance team. She died a short while later.

"All the heaviness, all the sadness, lay it aside because now is a time for celebration," DeKalb Academy's Sonya Armstrong said.

The group gathered on the campus of the school where Purefoy spent her childhood to give an extraordinary tribute to her young life and friendships. 

"The world needs to know that she was a beautiful soul, she would always try to help you with whatever you needed help with at any time," Purefoy's lifelong friend Lauren Lindsay said.

Her dance team had the difficult but meaningful task of remembering her life through their art at the vigil.

"Everything she went for, she had a vision, and she would accomplish it very swiftly, I would not say easily, because she earned everything she had," Lindsay said.

In addition to the service, a tree was planted on the campus in Purefoy's honor.