One year later: Gabbie Green's mother talks about daughter's legacy

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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Nearly a year after local middle school student Gabriella Green took her own life, her mother Tanya talked with us about how she is being remembered.

Green, who is more commonly remembered as "Gabbie," passed away January 10, 2018.

"I can't believe that it's been a year already," Tanya Green, Gabbie's mother said.

That date forever changed the lives of her friends and family.

"Her passing hit our family so hard," Tanya said.

Gabbie was 12 years old when she took her own life after friends and family say she was bullied.

Tanya said, "It's been a very tough year."

As the light in the lives of her loved ones, including her mother, Gabbie's loss of life may feel like darkness, but come January 10, 2019, the beach will illuminate in her honor.

"It's hardly a celebration, but it's a celebration more so of the life that she lived and the life that she stands for now," Tanya said.

A candlelight ceremony called "Illumination of a Precious Life" will be held in the area of the City Pier in Panama City Beach Thursday at 4:45 p.m.

Those who attend are encouraged to wear green.

After losing her daughter, Tanya believes Gabbie's life has helped bullied children by connecting them to counselors and providing scholarships.

Tanya said, "We just want children to have the chance to be successful."

The success of sharing Gabbie's legacy is evident as Tanya said children have reached out to her and the foundation, whether it be to seek advice or give words of encouragement to the Green family.

"Really, to them it brightens their day and they feel like they can actually do something or accomplish something," Tanya said.

Other organizations and businesses that have helped the cause include Surf Style and Panhandle Helicopter.

Although Gabbie's story has touched the lives of others, the work doesn't stop here.

"I don't think it's getting better in this area just yet, but you know, we have a lot to do," her mother said.

Tanya and the foundation hope to create a law to help other bullying victims.

Tanya said, "We're really going to try to make a law that would've prevented Gabbie's passing."

She believes education and legislation can make a difference for bullied children.

She said, "Our foundation is going to be here for the children."