Taylor’s FieldReading Time: 2 minutes
Two beautiful gazebos situated at the north end of the field overlook an acre of open space. This open field provides learning opportunities (including searching and collecting) and a place to run and explore. Additional equipment is accessible for tumbling, rolling, hopping, and jumping.
Taylor Knowles (4.25.00 – 6.28.05) was a student at The School for Young Children from 2003-2005. She loved her days at SYC and made many friends in her short time there. The School meant so much to Taylor. Below is a message from Taylor’s parents, Keith & Sally Knowles.
“On March 8, 2005, our daughter, Taylor, was diagnosed with an inoperable and incurable tumor on her brain stem. She passed away only three short months later on June 28. Although we’ve lived through every parent’s worst nightmare, we have learned many great lessons from this experience … and we learned them through the strength, courage and perseverance of a little 5-year old girl with cancer.
Taylor’s tumor slowly robbed her of her motor skills and over the course of three months, she lost the ability to walk, talk, eat and finally breathe. She died in our arms. The amazing part of her story is that she never once complained about what was happening to her. She never let the cancer beat her. The night before she died, Sally told Taylor that she was going to chase Taylor around the house the next day. Taylor gave her mom the ‘thumbs up’ sign which meant ‘yes.’
Even in her final hours she never gave up and never lost her spirit. That life lesson has taught not only our family but many others who were inspired by Taylor. We were blessed with an amazing support network during Taylor’s illness. We can’t express how much that network helped us through this ordeal. Taylor has inspired us to help other families who are going through similar situations. We personally know that the support of family, friends, the community and even strangers means a great deal to these families.
When Taylor was diagnosed, she was in her second year at The School for Young Children. The School meant so much to Taylor and the West Hartford and SYC communities were extremely supportive of us during her final months. Because of their support during our time of loss, we wanted to give back by building a memorial at the entrance of the open field adjacent to The School.”
The memorial created an entranceway into the field with adjoining gazebos. An archway designated the field as ‘Taylor’s Field at Beach Park.’ We feel this memorial makes the field more inviting for the School and for the community.