I've been wanting to write this post but wasn't ready. Now I think I can. About 5 weeks after I filmed the high school basketball team, there was a terrible car accident in the early morning hours after prom. Five Moab teens were in a vehicle, traveling far too fast. The car rolled and two kids were killed, three injured. That Sunday, the community knew there had been an accident because we could hear the helicopters flying. We then heard that it involved local teens, we just didn't know who. That night, I received a text from Lexy, the assistant Lady Red Devil basketball coach, informing me that Taylor, a freshman, #25, had been killed in the car accident. Lexy wondered if I could make a memorial video for Taylor and of course I wanted to.
As I went through the footage, I cried. A lot. 14 is too young to die. I stared at the face of this beautiful young girl for hours. Taylor wasn't a starter or captain and was the only freshman on the team. At first I worried I wouldn't have much footage of her, but as I started looking, I actually had a lot of footage of her. Great footage. She may have only been a freshman, but she was a fierce and smart player and confident with her spot on the team.
I believe there was divine intervention that helped me capture what I did of Taylor. So much of it was unique and different than what I had of the other players. During the pre-game warmup, Taylor is the only player not wearing her long sleeved red warmup shirt, so she shines bright from the others in her white jersey. I found footage of Taylor coming off the court at half time and giving her coach a big high five. I found footage of Taylor giving her closest friend on the team, a senior, an encouraging pat on the shoulder. I actually remember filming that, and thinking how sweet it was, and it was one of the warmest things I captured that day. In the locker room after the game, of all the players, it was Taylor I captured handing her worn jersey to the coach. As I watched her on the court, it was clear to me she was a smart, aggressive player. She wasn't a starter, but she would've been a star by the time she was a senior. Multiple times I filmed her diving on the floor to save a ball and driving through thick defense for a layup.
I was beyond grateful I could make a video for Taylor, her family, and her team. I am grateful the coaches had the foresight and followed their gut to have me come film. As a videographer, I always thought something like this could happen , but I thought it would be for a grandparent or parent in a wedding. Not for a teenager. I think of Taylor often, even though I really only knew her through this video. Our lives can change in a day. I know we have all experienced tragedy that shove this reminder in our face. But it is so true. May we all strive to cherish those around us. To be kind. To love others. To forgive.