Losing a child is every mother's greatest fear. One that Dana Bailey lived through and still struggles with
Taylor was 14 when he died
Taylor in his Little League days
LEESBURG, GA (WALB) -
A Lee County mother whose son died after falling off the back of a car last year wants to spread the word about the importance of organ donation.
14-year-old Taylor Bailey died 17 days after that accident.
Just yesterday the 19-year-old driver of the car was indicted on vehicular homicide charges. Bailey's mother says she wants her son to remembered as more than a victim. WALB News Tens Cade Fowler is here with her story.
Losing a child is every mother's greatest fear. One that Dana Bailey lived through and still struggles with. Despite her son's tragic death, he still lives on through others.
Memories and pictures are what Dana has to remember her son Taylor
A kid who loved baseball and at a young age overcame a heart condition. He was a healthy 14-year-old boy until the night of April 19, 2011 when a Leesburg police officer came to her home.
"He explained to us that we needed to get to the hospital as soon as possible because Taylor was in an accident," Dana said.
Bailey was sitting on the trunk of car filled with several other teens driven by 19-year-old Steven Mathis. He fell off near the corner of Nacoochee and Groover Streets, suffering severe head injuries. This week a grand jury indicted Mathis on charges of vehicular homicide and reckless driving.
"The neurosurgeon met us there and told us this is not good. His chances of survival are very slim."
For 17 days Bailey was in a coma at the Medical Center of Central Georgia. A preacher Baptized him and soon after he began losing his fight.
"Taylor had tears coming down the sides of his cheeks. He was telling us goodbye," said his mom.
But before Taylor lost his life, others facing the same fate got new leases on theirs, thanks to him.
"We donated five organs. We buried him the day before Mothers Day. The Saturday before Father's Day, we got a letter from one of the kidney recipients."
A 57-year-old middle school teacher received one Taylor's kidneys. "Now he's going back to work, and he couldn't stop thanking us for that gift," Dana said.
Three days ago Taylor would have turned 15. And while his mom clings to his memories, the pictures, she knows each day her son lives on each day through others.
"He would be proud to know that he's still living in five others people..." his mom said.
And there are thousands of people in Georgia awaiting transplants. Look for the story on our website to learn more about organ donations and how you too could save a life.
If Mathis is convicted of vehicular homicide, he could face up to 15 years in prison.