MT. LEBANON (KDKA) — Friends, family, and community members have been stepping up to help Kara Leo’s family after she died in a freak accident involving a tree branch.
40-year-old Leo and her husband, Jared Quinteros, were hiking along the Morton Ravine Trail at Boyce Mayview Park in Upper St. Clair when a large tree branch fell and struck the South Fayette couple Thursday night. Leo died in the hospital and Quinteros was seriously injured.
“Just utter shock, I mean, you just don’t believe it,” said Jeff Iovino, Leo’s friend, and business partner.
A bouquet of flowers and a rock with the word ‘angel’ on it lay where the tragic accident happened.
Flowers have also been placed outside of Leo’s small business, Kara Kakes, in Mt. Lebanon.
“I’m better for knowing her, it’s just odd,” Iovino said.
Iovino said the talented baker was one of a kind. He said Leo’s bake shop specialized in nut-free cakes and will be missed greatly by residents.READ MORE: Fallen Tree Branch Hits And Kills Woman In Upper St. Clair Park, Husband Left Injured
“She had a zest for life, she loved to create, she loved what she did, this was her dream,” Iovino said.
A GoFundMe page was created to raise money for Leo’s two sons and husband. Their friends said Quinteros is paralyzed. People have donated more than $100,000.
“I’m shocked with how high it got but I’m not shocked at how people the way they react and how generous they want to be, it’s just something special.”
Leo’s good friend Alyssa Landas said, “Kara was nothing but a joy to be around. She always had that huge smile and those welcoming arms when you saw her. She was truly the definition of a ray of sunshine. Jared is nothing short of amazing as well. He can make friends with a stranger and make them feel as if they have been a part of his family for years. He is just that special. The GoFundMe started out as goal of $2k and it is now currently at a little over $84k…. this just goes to show how much of an impact Kara had on her friends, family, and community. She is going to be missed so terribly by so many. My heart is with Jared, Owen, Oliver, and all of her loved ones during this difficult time.”
Kara Leo was a friend, a wife, a mother, a pastry chef, and she was so loved. All the support for their family shows the lasting impact she made on others.
“It just shows the good side of the world and Kara brought that out of people, that’s probably the biggest thing. She was a great person, she was an amazing person and she lifted everyone up around her,” Iovino said.