“She said it was Matt and my heart just dropped because he had just passed away,” Knighten said. “It broke my heart because – what a beautiful person.”
Jackson was with two others when the vehicle veered off the road and struck a tree, according to reports. The two other people survived.
“I still cannot believe it,” Knighten wrote in a Facebook post, according to the LA Times. “I thought for sure I would get the chance to see him again, give him a hug and thank him at least once more in person.
“Now I won’t get that chance, but more importantly no one else will get the chance to meet him. And that breaks my heart.”
Despite the tragic news of Jackson’s death, Knighten said she will honor his legacy by continuing to pay it forward and encouraging others to do the same.
“It is beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time,” she added to NBC 7. “We are trying to turn something sad into something really good.”