A renewed message for youngsters to wrap up warm this winter has been made by the family of Bernadette Lee who was found dead in the snow in January after a night out in Deal.
The message came after her family and friends marked what would have been her 26th birthday on Friday by letting off Chinese lanterns.
Roger Lee, Bernadette’s father, said: “When you go out in the winter, make sure you have got a mobile phone topped up, you are with friends and you don’t get too drunk.”
He also urged youngsters to ensure they have enough money for a taxi home.
Former Walmer Science College pupil Bernadette, who lived in Canterbury, was found without a coat or shoes outside her sister’s house in Church Meadows, Deal on Sunday, January 20.
She had been out the night before and was due to stay with a friend in Deal.
When she got separated and could not reach her on the phone, she made her way to her sister’s house in Church Meadows after getting dropped off and turned away from a party at Middle Deal Road.
"Make sure you have a mobile phone topped up, you are with friends and you don’t get too drunk” - Roger Lee.
But her sister had lost her key and had to stay at a friend’s house. Bernadette, known as Bernie to friends and family, tried to get in, but did not telephone her sister to tell her she was stranded.
She died in the early hours of hypothermia, which was accelerated by the high amount of alcohol in her body – which lowered her body temperature.
Her sister Jodie Lee added: “Please make sure you wrap up warm in freezing conditions and pace yourself when drinking.
“If my sister hadn’t drunk so much she may have had her wits about her and managed to call a taxi to go to a friend’s, or knock on someone’s door, or call me.”
She also urged friends to be responsible for each other, ensuring everyone in the group gets home safely.
On Bernadette’s birthday, friends and family left messages on her Facebook page including her uncle, Malcolm Lee.
He said: “Happy birthday Bernadette hope you are having a great time wherever you are.”
Her friend Katie Baker posted a touching poem and added: “Happy Birthday Bern, miss you so much and we will all miss you that much more on this special day. You really were one in a million babe and you will be forever in my heart”.