Parents of girls killed in fire host first annual benefit ride

WIGGINS, MS (WLOX) - In 2007, Courtney and Ashley Womack were killed tragically when their grandfather's mobile home caught on fire.

Six years later, the city of Wiggins rallied around the girls' parents, helping them raise enough money to pay for both funerals. Saturday, their parents teamed up with the Wiggins Fire Department to host a motorcycle rally in their honor.

This was the first annual Courtney and Ashley Womack Benefit Ride. Jody Hatten, who works with the Wiggins Fire Department, was more than happy to help organize the event.

"I think it's really great that they're doing it to keep their memory going. Plus, I think it's a great opportunity for us to teach about fire safety and the dangers of fire and what could happen," said Hatten.

Courtney would have been 14, and her younger sister Ashley would have been 12. Renee Rayburn is a friend of the family, but she was also the girls' school bus driver. Their parents didn't want to be on camera, but Rayburn gave this message on their behalf.

"It's awesome to see all of these people turn out like this and help support. I mean, their parents are so overwhelmed," said Rayburn.

Each rider had to pay a registration fee to enter. All of the money raised will go toward the Courtney and Ashley Womack Scholarship fund. The Womacks say this is the least they can give to a town that gave them so much during the hardest time of their lives.

Copyright 2013 WLOX. All rights reserved.