SOMERSET, Ky. (WTVQ/Press Release) – Somerset siblings and congenital heart defect survivors, Sadie and Maverick Taylor, have been awarded the Central Kentucky American Heart Association’s Finn Collier Service Award.
Sadie and Maverick Taylor, ages 6 and 3, alongside parents Bridgett and Jeff, share their heart stories to raise awareness of congenital heart defects and much-needed funds for heart disease research.
The Taylors are always looking for opportunities to engage the community in the American Heart Association’s mission–whether it is speaking at events, volunteering on committees or walking in the Lake Cumberland Area Heart Walk.
They also raise money for the Association through fundraisers like a “kindness plates” and “don’t go breaking our hearts” puzzle that fills as donations are made.
“The American Heart Association has been a great resource and source of support for our family. It has helped us connect with other families that are going through the same situations that we are and we know that we are not alone,” said Sadie and Maverick’s mother, Bridgett Taylor.
The Finn Collier Service Award was created in memory of Finn Collier, a fierce advocate for the American Heart Association who lost his battle with heart disease at just seven years old. The award honors children and young adults who go above and beyond to support the life-saving mission of the American Heart Association.
“We are thrilled that the Taylor family is the first recipient of the Finn Collier Youth Service Award, and we are grateful to the Central Kentucky American Heart Association for memorializing Finn in this way,” stated Finn’s parents, John and Tricia Collier. “Finn loved spreading awareness and raising funds for research, and we feel this family continues to do what Finn would have carried on. He would have been amazed that this one family had two children with special hearts! We hope to have many nominations in 2021!”
Of the award, Bridgett said, “Sadie and Maverick are honored to receive the Finn Collier Service Award. They just try to give back a small piece of what our family has received from the American Heart Association. Whether it is financial support or just bringing about awareness for heart disease, our family hopes to be a blessing to those in and around our community.”
Congenital heart defects, or CHDs, are the most common type of birth defect in the United States, affecting nearly 40,000 infants each year. The American Heart Association has invested nearly $60 million in CHD research since 2009 alone, helping to ensure better care for all children born with structural heart defects. But awareness, like that raised by Sadie and Maverick, is key to helping children born with these defects.