TOWNSEND (WATE) - Family and friends gathered in Townsend Saturday afternoon to remember the mother who saved her three children from their burning home, before dying in the fire herself.
Kristina Kallstrom, 40, died just a few days before Thanksgiving. Her children now live with relatives in Atlanta.
"It has been very trying in so many different ways, because there has been so much change for the children, not including the loss we've had with losing our sister. We've also had their children and we've had to try and make their life good again," said Kallstrom's brother Rob Marshall.
Kristina's niece Melissa Colatosti spoke at the memorial of the special bond they shared as moms.
"It's been really difficult, especially thinking about her kids. I have kids that are around the same age as some of her kids, so it's been really hard to think about them growing up not knowing her like we've all gotten the chance to know her. And just the fact that they aren't going to have their mom around has been really hard," Colatosti explained.
Family members spoke of Kristina's love of music as well.
"Hearing her music, hearing her talk about the things that she's done cooking and going to school and things that she's done with the kids," added Colatosti.
Other memories stand out as well.
"I remember when my grandpa died and she was in town, I was driving her to the funeral home and just having a normal conversation with her. There was nothing special about it. It was just a conversation, but getting to have that moment with her," explained Colatosti.
Marshall says his fondest memory of his sister will be her children.
Marshall says they are still adjusting to the changes and that family and friends are helping them take care of Kristina's children.