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April is National Donate Life Month, and a family who suffered the tragic loss of their 13 year old daughter to a horrific skiing accident has taken charge of informing the world of just how amazing donating organs can be. Taylor Storch died on March 15, 2010, but her heart is still very much alive…no joke! Taylor’s family donated her heart, pancreas, kidneys, liver and corneas to people in desperate need of organ transplants. To promote organ transplant awareness, Todd and Tara Storch, Taylor’s parents, have founded Taylor’s Gift in honor of their daughter.
In “Taylor’s Gift,” a book written by Taylor’s parents and Jennifer Schuchmann, the Storches tell their story of healing and hope with the stories of the people whose lives were saved by Taylor’s organs. Taylor’s heart went to a 39 year old mother of two in Arizona, her pancreas and one kidney went to a 49 year old husband and father in Colorado and her other kidney went to a 33 year old man in Colorado. Her corneas delivered the gift of sight to a young girl and her liver changed a little boy’s life for the better. Taylor’s parents also make the case for the urgent need for organ donors, while addressing the myths that prevent people from donating their organs.
Taylor’s Gift has partnered with OPI nail polish to create the color Taylor Blue. The Storches encourage men and women to paint their nails blue and share information about organ donation registration through the hashtag #TaylorBlue. Todd Storch states, “By being an organ donor, we have the opportunity to make a difference; give others a new chance for a normal, healthy life and to give people back to their families and friends. Organ donation is about living. And it’s about doing something to outlive yourself.” In a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 117,000 people are on organ transplant lists in America, and 18 people die waiting every day. Taylor’s Gift’s goal is to eventually register more than 100 million people for organ donation.
You too can be a hero, just like Taylor and her parents are for making the decision to use Taylor’s organs to save the lives of those who desperately need it. If you’re concerned about the process, grab a copy of “Taylor’s Hope” and read all of the literature the Storches have provided on Taylor’s Gift and Organ Donation Awareness. If you decide you would like to be a donor, you can simply visit www.taylorsgift.org, click on “Register to be an organ donor” and find your state. It takes less than 90 seconds to give the gift of life!