Remembering "T"

By: Mark Vaughn Email
By: Mark Vaughn Email

It's been 15 months since Taylor Haugen died after suffering a ruptured liver in a JV game against Fort Walton Beach.

Taylor's Mom Kathy Haugen said, "You just don't think about it ever ending up the way it ended up."

Taylor's Dad Brian Haugen added, "It's been a year of a lot of pain, alot of recovery, but a lot of pain."

This past year has been a roller coaster of emotions for his family, and friends, but Taylor was the type of young man that wouldn't want them to live with sadness. And he left behind a message to help them get through the tough times.

Taylor’s parents read his words, "A motto for me is plain and simple, never give up, don't ever give up. I think of that quote every time I feel like quitting something then I drive on and push through the tough times."

Taylor wrote those words just 8 days before he died in his essay "Don't Quit...Never Give Up." And his motto is inspiring people he never even met.

Florida Quarterback team Tebow said, "When my life is over I don't want people to remember about me the national championship, the Heisman. I want them to remember the lives that I changed... So, in a way I want to be exactly like Taylor Haugen."

Tim Tebow is one of thousands that carry Taylor's message with them everyday on this wristband. Tebow was given his by the Haugen's last year, before he presented the first Taylor Haugen award. He hasn't taken it off since.

Kathy Haugen added, "I am honored not only for myself but for T. that Timmy Tebow felt the need to wear it and continue to wear it, and that he's inspired by my son."

Taylor is inspiration for the entire Gator football team and his Niceville Eagles.

So, as his teammates have one their best seasons ever they continue to keep Taylor close by.

Niceville Head Coach John Hicks said, "Try and keep something that constantly reminds them of Taylor. I have a pin, they wear the wristbands. We feel like he'll be with us."

Even though he was only here for 15 years "T" left a legacy that will always live on.

For more on the Taylor Haugen Foundation visit http://taylorhaugen.org/index.php


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