THE hearts of more than 400 people broke yesterday as the lives of Nicole 'Niki' Taylor and her daughter Darcie Storer were commemorated at Lismore Memorial Gardens and Crematorium.
The Lismore mother and daughter were killed in an horrific head-on crash on the Pacific Highway at Kundabung, 25km south of Kempsey, last Friday, August 8.
Family, friends and Lismore Heights Public School classmates of 11-year-old Darcie formed a guard of honour as the two coffins were taken from the hearse, while K D Lang's version of Hallelujah played, setting the scene for an emotional ceremony.
Niki's mother, Wendy Taylor, reflected on her beautiful daughter and her family.
"The whole family, Niki, Andrew, Rose and Darcie just loved each other so much," she said.
"They just oozed love."
In her eulogy, Linda Caerdinael, Niki's best friend since Year Eight at school, remembered a loving, generous, intelligent, respectful mother of two, who loved netball.
She told of unforgettable memories of the two growing up, and the many letters they exchanged, where Niki told her how proud she was of her family.
"My friendship with Niki was that of a sister. No amount of time or space could ruin our relationship," she said.
"Niki would have wanted us to celebrate a life well lived."
Brad Taylor choked back tears as he spoke of the love for his 40-year-old sister and his niece.
"Niki, you blessed our lives with your sparkling eyes and contagious smile," he said.
"Darcie, your youth was infectious and I was honoured to be your uncle."
On behalf of more than 150 netballers and officials who attended, Rochelle Watson, who coached with Niki at the North Coast Academy of Sport, expressed their collective sorrow.
"Niki was full of life, laughter and love," she said
"She coached, umpired, mentored and managed many players in our sport."
Darcie's best friend, Skye Lannoy, emotionally reflected on her 'sister'.
"She was beautiful, talented, creative, amazing and awesome," she said.
"Darcie and Niki were two beautiful people who should be here today, but God had better plans for them."
Toward the end of the service, hundreds of people queued to pay their last respects and sprinkle yellow rose petals on the two coffins.
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