Be Like Bailey: Celebrating her life on what would have been her 16th birthday

CALVERT CITY, KY — Caring, funny, loyal, honest and kind: those are the words family and friends use to describe Bailey Nicole Holt. She would have been 16 Tuesday, May 15, 2018, had a school shooter not taken her life and Preston Cope’s, along with hurting so many others. Those who knew her remember and celebrate the 15 years she graced this earth.

As a friend, she was compassionate. “‘Cause she has that. She’s so caring. Everybody loves her for that,” said childhood friend Johanna Davis.

As a cousin, she was one of a kind. “She wasn’t like any other person —quiet and shy,” described cousin Kyler Holt-Riddle.

As a granddaughter, she was exceptional. “She was on of the best children that ever been, growing up. She never had anything bad to say about anybody,” said her grandmother, Brenda Holt.

“I love the ones with her pigtails, her braids. That’s her. You can just see how they grew in the pictures. That smile,” shared Brenda.

It’s a smile still lighting up her mamaw ‘s living room. “I’m still expecting her to walk through the door, but we talk about her often,” said Brenda.

Her cousins — Kyler and his younger brother Jackson — said it’s through stories that Bailey stays with them. “Even Bailey loved stories, though. Every time she came over here, she would ask her about a story. Every single time,” said Jackson.

With each memory, Bailey lives on. “Me and Bailey both freaked when the guitarist from her favorite band, Def Leppard, pointed at me. And we both freaked out. We didn’t know what to do. We just laughed about it the whole time,” said Jackson.

Bailey adored her beloved pup, Mitzi; enjoyed rocking out to ’80s bands, cheering hard core for the Louisville Cardinals, and sporting Converse shoes. “The last time I saw her was Converse, jeans, sweatshirt, and hair band, and her hair put up in either a bun or ponytail,” said Johanna.

Johanna said Bailey’s style was simple. “How crazy I remember that,” the friend said. And her heart for others unmatched. “Everybody needs to live like Bailey,” she said. “Be kind to one another.”

Students will remember Bailey’s kindness and her smile. “Just keep remembering her. You can’t forget. We don’t want people to forget, you know?” said Kyler.

This year’s Marshall County High School yearbook shares what Bailey was to her immediate family. She was a protective big sister and role model, her mom’s best friend, her parents’ first-born child and answered prayer, and her daddy’s biggest fan and angel.

You can help keep Bailey’s memory alive and honor her ambition of becoming a nurse by donating to the Bailey Holt Memorial Nursing Scholarship.

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