On May 1, 2011, Avery Spence was killed in a car accident involving five other teenagers. Instead of blaming the other kids in the car, Avery's parents and sisters reached out to these teens and their families, helping them to move on with their lives. One family who was helped (and nominated them for this honor) goes so far as to say "they saved the other five children's lives." They have also maintained Avery's Facebook page to help make an impact on other youth and their families in the community.
From the Spence Family: "We never thought of ourselves as heroes but appreciate Marianne's nomination and feel honored to have been able to help her family as well as many others in the community. Avery was a beautiful, intelligent and athletic young lady. We felt that we responded exactly how she would have wanted us to. She loved life and people and enjoyed helping others. She would never want anyone to be hurt or sad but rather continue enjoying life as she did. We know God works in mysterious ways and have coped with this tragedy by knowing that it was her turn to be called to Heaven. We hold no hard feelings and wanted to be sure our thoughts were shared with the other teenagers in the car. Avery could very well have been in any one of their shoes. She had a very large network of friends through soccer, school, community events and our neighborhood. Many people were saddened by her accident, and with us all pulling together to support one another, it has brought our entire community together and helped us cope with our loss. In our book, Avery is the true hero."