Family and friends gathered last week to remember a 16-year-old girl who was killed in a hit-and-run crash, who was described as “an all-around beautiful soul.”
“She was a daughter, an amazing sister to her brothers, a devoted friend through thick and thin, she was always the person that people would call to talk to,” Calen Baldree, the mother of the late Jayden Baldree, said.
Jayden Baldree was killed in what police say was a hit-and-run crash shortly after midnight on Monday, July 19, along North Point Boulevard, where police say she was riding a bicycle and was struck by a vehicle driving in the same direction.
Investigators are still searching for suspects who they believe removed tags from the 2005 Acura involved and abandoned the vehicle at the intersection of Baltimore Street and Eastbrook Avenue.
She was described by her mother as “bubbly, and artistic and a fire in everybody’s life” last Friday, just prior to her funeral, which was held at the Duda-Ruck Funeral Home, which is owned by family members, on Saturday.
The Sparrows Point High School student had a passion for rollerskating, making art and doing makeup, which she “practiced so hard,” her mother said.
“She became one of my best friends and favorite road trip and shopping companion,” Cyndi Robertson, Jayden Baldree’s “second mom” said.
“She was incredibly close to her mother, and was never going to fit a mold, but born to break it which can be attributed to her parents Greg [Cassidy] and Calen,” she said.
“I have a very sassy 7-year-old, who can often times be very spunky and say things, and Jayden was always saying ‘you shouldn’t talk to your mom like that’,” Angela Borg, Calen Baldree’s sister, said. “She wanted the best, and she wanted everyone to get along”
“She had like, a really bubbly personality,” Jessica O’Kelley, who is Jayden Baldree’s step-aunt, said. She said Jayden Baldree was a “very sweet, loving girl” who would hang out with her friends on the pier at O’Kelley’s home on Sandy Plains Road, and was always willing to take on tasks, such as watching her younger brothers, even when she didn’t want to.
Jessica O’Kelley, who is the sister of Calen Baldree’s boyfriend Matt O’Kelley, initiated a fundraiser for Jayden Baldree’s funeral expenses, which raised a total of $19,490, far beyond its original goal of $15,000.
The family said they were amazed by the love they were shown from the Dundalk and Sparrows Point community over the past week. In addition to a vigil near the crash site on North Point Boulevard and a candlelight vigil outside of Skateland North Point, where Jayden Baldree had started her “dream job,” the family said they were thankful for community members who brought flowers and kind words.
“I just thank everybody for just showing the amount of love she so rightfully needs and deserves,” Calen Baldree said.
Family said Ken Jones, the manager of Skateland North Point, is helping to set up a scholarship in honor of Jayden Baldree.