LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- The mother of Heather Heyer sat down with WHAS11's Robert Bradfield ahead of the annual Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards Saturday to discuss accepting the Social Justice Award posthumously for her daughter.
"We got the phone call that they were looking for next of kin and I had a bad feeling about that," said an emotional Susan Bro.
She would spend 45 minutes driving to the hospital where that bad feeling quickly turned to heartbreak. "Probably the worst day of my life," she recalled.
Her daughter, Heather Heyer, died as a result of her injuries when she was run down during a rally of white nationalists in Virginia. Heyer was part of a counter-demonstration campaigning against hate. She will be posthumously awarded the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award for Social Justice.
"I realize she gave her life, but she was such a small fish in big pond," Bro told WHAS11.
Bro created the Heather Heyer Foundation. It's something she hopes will be her daughter's legacy. The foundation will give scholarships to those interested in social justice issues.
"My best friend told me I was making lemonade out of some very sour lemons. That's true. We're going to use it for good. It was not a good thing by any means," she said.
She spends her days the way her daughter lived—promoting acceptance, justice, and equality. Bro recalls the last time she spoke to her daughter days before her death.
"She said, 'I'm making a life insurance policy.' She said, 'You're the beneficiary.' I said, 'Well don't die. I'd rather have you then the money.' She said, 'LOL. I'll try not to.' That's the last conversation I had with my child. Just blows my mind," Bro said tearfully.
The Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Marriott in downtown Louisville. The event is sold out.