This is one of those stories that I know will make me cry but I can't help clicking the link ... when Tara and Todd Storch lost their 13-year-old daughter Taylor in a ski accident three years ago, their hearts broke, but they made sure her death would give hope and life to other families. Not only did they donate Taylor's organs (to no less than FIVE recipients), they founded Taylor's Gift, an organization to encourage organ donor registration.
This video just kills me. Seriously, if you're going to watch it, be prepared to need to cry and run and squeeze your own children until they can barely breathe ...
Augh! I lost it when they showed Taylor's bedroom. After viewing that video, I checked out the website they set up, TaylorsGift.org, and it's amazing. I had no idea that 19 people die every day in the U.S. waiting for the gift of an organ donation. I'm already registered as an organ donor, but it's super easy to select your state and register yourself on the site.
What a truly beautiful testament to the love the Storches have for their daughter -- and I do mean "have," not "had." A love like that never dies. It could not have been easy to think of Taylor's body being opened up, but a gift like that -- a gift of nothing less than life -- is an incredible way to honor Taylor's own life. When her mom, in the video, says it made sense for their family to donate their daughter's organs "because of the type of child Taylor is" and then corrects herself to "was" ... oh my heart! (Speaking of heart ... if you can take it, there's a video of Tara listening to her daughter's heart beat inside the chest of a woman whose life was saved by it. I can't actually watch it myself!)
How moving and inspiring. If you want to learn more about this family, you can read their book, Taylor’s Gift. You can also paint your nails with OPI's "Taylor Blue" -- all proceeds of both the book and the nail polish will go to support the foundation. Already 12 million people have registered -- think of how many lives have been saved!
I am mourning my own loss right now -- as I've written about a little bit already, my little sister passed away very unexpectedly just after Christmas, and it's a terrible process, coping with utter heartbreak and this debilitating grief. I know exactly what the Storches mean when they say it feels like it happened yesterday AND a lifetime ago. I can see that one thing that will never fade is their love, and that is comforting to me. I'd love to find some way to honor my sister's life in the way the Storches are honoring their sweet girl.
Are you registered as an organ donor? Would you want to make the same decision as the Storches?
Image via TaylorsGift.org