SAN ANTONIO -

Despite their heartache, Kali Gorzell’s parents said they are encouraged by the “Live Like Kali” movement that has inspired a YouTube video as a tribute to their daughter.

“Live like Kali and live to the fullest and enjoy every single day,” said Donna Gorzell, Kali’s mom.

The 16-year-old Smithson Valley High School junior was killed last Friday near Aransas Pass.

James Gorzell, Kali’s dad, said the boat was turning toward shore when his daughter, who was seated, was tossed out beneath the propeller.

He said the boat operator, the father of one of Kali’s best friends who also was on board, considered Kali one of his own.

“I have all the trust in the world,” Gorzell said. “He’s been operating a boat since he was a boy.”

The Gorzell’s said just last week they had spoken about their eldest son, Kirby, leaving for college on a golf scholarship.

“But we’ve got Kali for three more years. Everything’s great,” Gorzell said.

Now they will have an empty nest where once their children and their friends would play on the volleyball court and small golf course that Gorzell said he built in the family’s backyard.

“I think that had a lot to do with the way they grew up, the way they developed,” he said.

In addition to the outpouring from Kali’s friends, Gorzell, an HEB executive, said he is grateful for his company’s support.

He said even Charles Butt, the HEB chairman and CEO, asked, “Again and again, 'What can we do? What can we do?'”

For young people who are having a hard time accepting her daughter’s death,

Kali’s mother said, “Let’s remember what Kali would do, and lift people up.”

Kali Gorzell’s rosary will begin at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church, 1602 Thousand Oaks, followed on Thursday with the 10 a.m. visitation and 11 a.m. service at Community Bible Church, 2477 Loop 1604 East.

IMAGES: Kali Gorzell

Published On: Jul 23 2012 11:15:55 AM CDT   Updated On: Jul 23 2012 11:30:35 AM CDT

Images of Smithson Valley boating accident victim Kali Gorzell.

1 / 8