Mother's Day was a bittersweet holiday for one family recovering from a tragedy that took the life of a mom and fiancée last month.

Kendall Wiebe was killed after a vehicle smashed through the hair salon on Portage Avenue where she was working last month. Wiebe left behind a grieving fiancée, Steve Cancilla, and three children.

Saturday the community rallied around the family and held a social to honour Wiebe, celebrate her life and raise money for a trust fund for Cancilla and Wiebe's children.

"I know right now she's smiling down on this night," said Cancilla, speaking to a crowded hall of people who came to remember Wiebe.

Cancilla broke down will addressing the crowded hall full of people at the Kirkfield Westfield Community Centre.

"It's an unbelievable even that's happened to our family. Nothing could have ever prepared us for what we're going through," Cancilla said.

Wiebe was just 27 when a Jeep slammed through the front of the Ultracuts salon she was working in. She and a co-worker were injured in the crash. Wiebe later died in hospital.

Wiebe and Cancilla were engaged to be married and had one biological child together. Cancilla and Wiebe raised two more children from a previous relationship. Cancilla said Wiebe raised them as if they were her own.

"The support that we're receiving as a family, it's overwhelming," Cancilla said.

Local businesses, the community of St. James and friends and family all coordinated to put on the social in Wiebe's honour.

"She was very bubbly, very smiley. She was actually one of the first moms that ever said, ‘Hi,' to me when I came to the new hockey team," remembered Stephanie Hruska, whose children are friends with Wiebe and Cancilla's.

"Kendall always had a smile. Kendall always saw the good in people – the good in situations," said Jason Houghton, a family friend.

Hundreds attended the social, which raised $35,000 for a trust fund for Wiebe and Cancilla's children – Meagan, Bryce and Brynn.

Friends were saddened by the reality that the children will now grow up without a mother.

"Just thinking about how difficult all the firsts are going to be -- for Steve, especially. First Mother's Day, first Christmas, first birthdays – all around without mom there for his little girl," said Houghton said.

And despite the overwhelming support from the community, Cancilla said the family continues to struggle, trying to make sense of the tragedy.

"When I wake up every morning it's hard to believe this is how my life is right now, and it's very difficult," Cancilla said.

Cancilla said the loss serves as a reminder to keep other loved ones close. "You want to hug them a little bit closer because life is truly fragile. You don't know when it can be taken away."

Wiebe would have celebrated her 28th birthday next week.

-- with a report from CTV's Deborah Mensah-Bonsu