Michelle Conroy, 21, was killed when the giant willow was brought down by 60mph winds last Saturday night. Her boyfriend David Browning, 27, originally from Newton Abbot, was one of two men who were also injured.
Yesterday it emerged that Guernsey-born Michelle had a troubled childhood and had been in and out of foster care.
Childhood friend Mary Parsons, 20, said Michelle was living with friends at a house in Plymouth but moved to Exeter to be with Mr Browning “a few months ago”.
She said: “I spoke to her a week before she died and she didn’t mention being homeless.
“If I had known, she could have come to stay with me. It was David that was homeless. He’s absolutely devastated and asking why it had to be her and not him.”
Michelle had lived with Mary at her family’s home in Buckfastleigh. She had been a pupil at South Dartmoor College, Ashburton.