Lauren Hill’s Lasting Impact

Lauren Hill passed away on April 10th, 2015 at the age of 19. For those of you who don’t know Lauren’s story, she was a freshman basketball player at Mount St. Joseph University, who was suffering from terminal brain cancer. Despite the inoperable brain tumor, she never gave up.

Lauren played a few basketball games for MSJ until her body couldn’t take it anymore. But, she didn’t stop there. Lauren raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for cancer research and became a role model for people around the world.

Although I didn’t know Lauren personally, I witnessed the lives she impacted. Every week, I go to a youth group called Athlete Impact at a friend of mine’s house. Lauren Hill was supposed to come speak at impact one week, but she was feeling too sick that day. I know she really wanted to come and speak and I understand why she couldn’t. Instead, Lauren’s basketball coach, Dan Benjamin, spoke about her. He told us about how she never gave up and how strong she was. I saw this look in his eyes as he sat there, tearing up over this girl’s amazing story, and I knew he meant every word of it.

When I found out Lauren had passed away, my heart dropped. I always wonder why bad things happen to good people, like Lauren. But, maybe everything is happening for a reason. Maybe, the world needed someone, like Lauren, to be living proof that giving up is not an option. Maybe, Lauren’s story will live on forever and others will continue to admire her strength and sincerity. When Lauren found out she was dying, she didn’t quit basketball and give up because her life was ending. Instead, Lauren taught us how to live. No one truly knows what it feels like to be dying until they’re dying, but Lauren didn’t waste a single moment. She did things that people once said were impossible. Her doctors said she wouldn’t make it to Christmas. Yet, she spent Christmas with her family and continued to keep fighting for four more months.

Just because Lauren passed away, doesn’t mean she gave up. She never gave up. She had no control over when she died. No one did. Lauren fought through it all and I hope that one day, I will be able to be as strong as she was.

Lauren’s story was heard all over the world and impacted many, especially me. She changed my view on life, so now I’m taking it one day at a time. Everyday is a blessing and you can never give up. I think everyone should take something away from Lauren’s story and the way she lived. Make your life mean something.

Watch: In Memory of Lauren

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