Memorial website in the memory of your loved one
Tributes and Condolences
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This song always makes me think of Taylor...  / Brittany (cousin)

It's called "James" by O.A.R. but I always sing it as "Tay..."

You said, "Young man, don't rely on a sword.
Cause your words will outlive even time."
I've counted my blessings.
The rest are for you.
Please listen close for awhile,
And breathe, breathe, deep for me (Tay).
Don't you feel that you're free now from pain?
I've heard about heaven for years.
Can't be sure where you are, wander on blessed (Tay).
I'm fine with you here.


I made the mistake once of fearing an end.
Is this life that we live just the world's accident?
Not a chance, so I move on with a smile. <--as Taylor would :)
Are you surprised where you are?
So breathe, breathe, deep for me (Tay).
Don't you feel that you're free now from pain?
I've heard about heaven for years.
Can't be sure where you are, wander on blessed (Tay).
I'm fine with you here.

I grew up slow on the heels of the rest.
Left my heart back at home, carried you in my chest.
And I don't feel like crying today.
Why can't we talk for awhile?
And breathe, breathe, deep for me (Tay).
Don't you feel that you're free now from pain?
I've heard about heaven for years.
Can't be sure where you are, wander on blessed (Tay).
I'm fine with you here.



You said, "Son, just listen to me."
But I'm doing fine, (Tay).
So you can sit back and just breathe.
And it's time now to let yourself go.
Hold us close, spin the dream, the curtain will fall but behind it
I see that you're here. 


This song, as well as so many other things remind me of my cousin. Sure this is a sad song, but no matter what it is that reminds me of Taylor... I always find myself smiling (through my tears). I still have a hard time looking at this website, only because it breaks my heart each and every time to see that not only do I suffer, but Taylor's immediate family, his extended family, his friends, and even passers by are touched, moved, and suffer over his loss. But I can guarantee this...
each and every person may very well leave this site in tears...
but they will no doubt have a smile on their face. It's just the kind of effect that Taylor always had on people and... will forever.

I missed Tay when he moved to Arizona... and I never got to say goodbye really... but I truly believe that I carry him in my heart. 
I love you Taylor... keep Aunt Lori,  and Brookie strong.

Your crazy cousin- always and forever<3
many hugs and kisses from buffalo.
--Britt

Thank you Burgstahler Family  / Careasa Hayes (I went to the basketball camp )
Dear Burgstahler family,
Hello I’m Careasa Hayes I’m 14 years of age and I’m one of the kids that your scholarship helped provide me with a wonderful experience at the 2007 suns basketball camp. You have no idea how thankful I am, that some family who doesn’t even know me would take time to send me gifts and a amazing, life changing, athletic experience. I am really sorry for your loss, I know I didn’t really know your son but I read this little information sheet telling me how outstanding him and his life accomplishments were. I know it’s probably hard for you to help other kids live your son’s basketball dream but I just want to tell you that there are a whole bunch of children that you helped that would make you, your family, and most importantly your son so proud! I worked my hardest everyday at that camp wishing that maybe someday I could help little kids fulfill their NBA or WNBA dreams just like you did and still do!!! Well I just wanted to say thank you for all you do!!! May your prayers be answered with God by your side!!!

Love,
Careasa Hayes
Yore boy Mother Poem -- For Taylor  / ROQUE LAZARUS (passerby)

 

Yore boy mother...

Yore Boy, yore once infant, mother.....has returned to the FATHER..

. THINKER.......a DREAMER.....your coat of shiny-armour...

bushy-eye brows.....angelic face.....a Charmer.....

did his bit...what he could....gave ya respect like a good son should,

you made him grow.....and how ...only you would know....

watered the plant.....with yer life blood-flow....

Apple of yer eye, let out a deep sigh,

dying while we live.....living while we die....

Grieve not ailing mother.....give back what you had been given!

Taylors` sprouted downy-wings, he`s soaring upto heaven!


The Yearning is the hardest to handle  / Lori Burgstahler (mother)

I sit here and think that in a few short months, it will be two years since Taylor has passed. What I have learned is that everything goes back to normal. Except the family. And the smaller the family, the harder it is to recover.

Children are G-d's medicine. They help to take the suffering away. I can say with a full heart that my daughter Brooke has been my antidote and without her I'm afraid I would not have survived this long. Yes, losing a child is that painful. I have been lucky to be able to express my thoughts and feelings on paper. I hope my forthcoming book will help others, and guide those of you that have not lost a child in your support of the bereaved parent.

Although there are so many emotions experienced (and at a very intense level) the one I'd like to focus on right now is the yearning. When your child dies and time has passed, one of the hardest things to cope with is the yearning. To me, the yearning has been the hardest part. I yearn so desparately to see my son again. To hear his sweet voice telling me a joke or hearing him giving encouragement to a friend over the telephone. I yearn to see his thick dark blonde hair and I yearn to walk up behind him like I'd done so many times before and ruffle his hair. To run my hands through his thick hair and announce to him that he is in need of a haircut. And to watch in amazement as his hair would grow back nearly as fast as it was cut off! I yearn to put my arms around him and hug him. To snuggle with my baby boy (even at 17) and tell him he was my greatest joy. To wrap my small arms around his strong shoulders and tell him that even though he was physically stronger than I was, that I would always be there to take care of him. I'd be there to make things better for him. I'd be his rock, I'd be there no matter what. Because as his mom, I was still strong enough to take care of him and always would be.

 I yearn to smell his sweat after a basketball game and to wash his uniform with lots of extra laundry detergent to make sure it was clean and smelled fresh for him for the next time he had to wear it. I yearn to see him make a "concoction" that he and his father made together with the blender. Running to the store to purchase different kinds of liquid drinks to mix together and to dare each other to go a step further and add in another ingredient. I miss the roar of the blender, the loudness that would rattle the stillness of a lazy sunday afternoon.

I miss having his friends coming over and hanging out. Just hanging out and being boys. Playing video games, laughing about girls and teachers. Watching how intensely they got into the video games and me, the mom; coming into his room to hug and kiss him. In the middle of the game, and Taylor would try to play around me so he wouldn't lose a point. But he never once told me to leave. He knew it'd only be a second to give him a quick hug and kiss. And all his friends would look and and smile, because they knew he was embarrassed, but they knew that their moms probably would be doing the same thing to them if they were at their house. Boys are magical. Son's are magical. My son was magical.

I could go on, but it hurts too much to think about it all. How much I'm missing. How much I will miss, and how much it hurts. People who haven't lost a child, especially those in the medical community think that parents linger in our pain because we are sad about all the lost opportunities with our child. True, but that isn't nearly what hurts us the most. Nor is it the hardest thing to cope with. For example, having a child who is severely injured and can no longer function, will no longer be able to fulfill all their dreams for the future. But the parents would rather have their child sick and disabled than dead. Even if there are all those lost oppotunities to deal with -- they still have their child alive. It is better than having a dead child. Because they have that we don't have -- hope.

When your child is dead, there is no hope for a cure. No hope for a miracle, no hope that they will recover. There is no hope. That is the difference. As a bereaved parent we have lost our hope. And that is what makes the yearning so difficult to handle. Because you know there is no hope in ever seeing your child again. And so you yearn. And the yearning becomes stronger each day and eventually becomes overwhelming. But you go on, especially if you have other children, because loving a child who is already alive is such a gift. So you put the yearning for your dead child into your back pocket and carry it with you wherever you travel.

The yearning never goes away. It eats at you like a pirranha nibbling on his meal made from your heart. Bit by bit, the yearning overtakes the constant crying and the urge to die. But the feeling never leaves you and you learn to once again hide this strong emotion from the rest of the world for fear you may make them feel uncomfortable. The yearning is the hardest part to handle.

sunday night  / Brianna (he has a part of me.. )

so many out there wonder WHY?? why so young... him... why her... why now?... it takes a lot out of me to wake up each morning and decide whether todays a day i'll mourn taylor... celebrate taylor... live my life... or try and make the time stand still. of course; i want my life to go back to being full of life before taylor passed away.. but i've lost hope in that coming back. tonight i listened to the audio of lori & guys speech at taylors memorial. i can't say that i'll be able to do that anytime soon.... it killed me inside. i closed my eyes and i felt as though i was sitting there. in the back... facing those who loved taylor just as much as me if not more. it's horrible. i feel angry and frustrated for not being able to change this nightmare. i feel hopeful that MAYBE taylors legacy will continue to grow stronger and stronger with the days, years, hours to come. i pray... that this emptyness is filled. but it wont be... he has a part of me with him. 



how does it feel to know your everything i need.
the butterflies in my stomach, they could bring me to my knees.
how does it feel to know your everything i want.
gotta a hard time so i'll sing it in a song
i adore the way you carry yourself
but the grace of a thousand angels over head
and i love the way the galaxy starts to melt
and we become one..... and we become one.
-So Much
[The Spill Canvas]



love you always taylor.
bri

great friend  / Mike Pelton (friend)

Taylor man, we had alot of good times. I know your in a better place now, just realize you will never be forgotten. I can only hope that I affect as many people in my life as you did in yours. See ya again one day man. You'll never be forgotten. 

Mike Pelton

Happy Birthday Taylor  / Sara Myers (Cuz)
Hey Aunt Lori,

I tried to email this to you Wednesday but it keeps bouncing back to me, so here's something I just wanted you all to know:

Just wanted you to know that even though I couldn't be with you guys today, I'm with you in spirit. I miss Taylor soo much, and I wish he was here with us today. All of us here in New York released balloons with a message attached in our respective cities in remembrance of Taylor. I know you guys did that Monday,
but I felt it was appropriate to wait until today for myself. So I just wanted you to know that I'm thinking about you, and that you're always in my prayers. And I'm especially always thinking about Taylor. He was such an amazing person, and I am always remembering the great times that we had together growing up,
playing spy or having sleepovers in our tent. Please tell Brookie that I miss her and I wish I could be with you guys.

Love,
Sara
You're 19th Birthday  / Mom (mother)

My dear child,

When I think of you, a word that often comes to mind is, "sweet," because that is what you are.  You were born with such a sweet deposition, a gentle nature that often made others feel comforted.  

I think of the day when Mr. Lulongo (your sixth grade teacher) had commented that he had never met a child before with as strong of a conscious as yours.  I knew he was right and I was so proud Taylor, so proud!

Even when you joked around or pulled pranks, you were always painfully aware of the feelings of those who were around you. I can't think of one time when you deliberately tried to hurt anyone.  You were always so grounded, things just never got to you.  That always amazed me.  You taught me how to be an adult and you did it as a child yet still better than any real adult ever could.

There are no words to describe how empty I feel now that I am without you.  The constant yearning to hold my darling son again never ceases to pull at my heart.  I shall never truly heal Taylor, but I'm sure you already know that.  I'm not sure where I fit in anymore Taylor because you were always such a guiding force for me.  

I struggle with the political correctness of how to handle your death in front of others.  I want to scream and cry and scratch at my skin.  I want to grab and shake other parents and desperately try to explain to them how hollow I feel now.  How it's never going to be alright and how much this truly hurts!  We'll move on because we're force to pretend to, because it's expected,  but not because we want to.  

I fear people in this world will never wake up to the beauty of the those around them.  Of the unique gifts that each of us offer.  How important every person is on this Earth who takes a breath.  I fear people will never fully realize the beautiful gift they have been given by being allow to linger in this world, for even just one more day.  

There are so many precious people in this world and we hear so little about the good they do.  We are so cut off from our gentle graciousness that we listen only to words that strike and injure.  I have committed myself to bringing to the world -- YOU.  People will know you Taylor, because they need to know you, because you represent everything that is good in this world. Happy Birthday my sweet Tay-Tay.  How I wish I were with you.

All my undying love and devotion,
Mommie

College / Nick Jacobson (Best Friend )
Well I started out the next step of my life this year, college.  I'm sorry its been so long since I've written I just have trouble putting my feelings into words.  We all miss you hear although its kinda weird cuz not everyone os together anymore.  Me, Roehm, Moschetta and McNeely are takin care of ASU though and its been a lot of fun.  I think what kills me the most is thinking about what you would've been up too right now.  I remember that it was one of the first things I thought about when I heard of the accident was just god he had so much ahead of him.  I'm sure you would've had a heck of a time at college cuz the freedom and meeting so many new people is a amazing.  I know you would have been amazing at the whole college thing.  I miss you a lot man, and I cant help but wonder what could've been.  Sorry for being so depressing I'm just letting you know I still love you and think about you everyday.  I still where your band although I've lost it a few times, lucky for me it always finds its way back.  Talk to ya later man.

Nick J (freddy)
wow, how long has it been?  / Kristin Couturier (friend)

Taylor,
You were one the most amazing people i've ever met in my life.
You were truly incredible.
Thanks for always being so friendly. 
I wish I could go back in time, back to 2005.
I miss you so.

Love,
 Kristin Couturier


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