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Mourning mother opens home and heart to local teen

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Updated: 12/24/2013 11:40 pm
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Those precious moments captured each Christmas is what Haley Smith's mother said she's so grateful to have this year.

"I have a picture of her when she was younger and she got a play table and chairs and she's like laying across the table, just hugging it because she was so happy to have it," said Jo-Lee Manning.

It's been more than a month since Jo-Lee Manning's 15-year-old daughter was killed in a hit-and-run accident on Kenton Morrison Road in St. Augustine.

So far, police have had little luck finding the driver but the family is still hopeful someone will come forward.

"Give us the justice for Haley and so we can understand why it happened," said Manning.

While Manning is coping, she's found comfort in her new role as a foster mother for a young teen, who we're told did not have a place to live during Christmas.

"She's actually one of Haley's friends and she needed a temporary foster home and I opened up my home to her," she said.

She said it's what Haley would have wanted. As a family they've decorated their Christmas tree with Haley's favorite ornaments and a special treat.

"She always wanted to make reindeer food and we'll do that tonight and sprinkle it out for her," said Manning.

Her Christmas wish this year is finding her daughter's killer.
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