Danielle’s Legacy

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Danielle’s Legacy

Zoe Dowley, Sports Editor

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This week marks the one year anniversary that Danielle Salcedo, a student that attended Vandegrift during the ’12-’13 school year, and a personal friend of mine, passed away. Danielle passed away at 2:42 p.m. on Sept. 16, 2013 after she was taken off of life support the night before due to a brain aneurysm that held her in a medically induced coma for that weekend. While on life support, word got out that everybody should wear red to support Danielle that Monday because it was her favorite color. Seeing all of the red throughout the school helped support everyone that knew and loved Danielle.

When I received the news that she passed away, I was at a complete loss for words and it broke my heart to know that I would never be able to see her and experience her wonderful personality again. I was so shocked because I didn’t expect her to pass away. When you are friends with someone, the last thing you would expect is for them to pass away from something that is so uncommon. I immediately knew that it would be a rough week for me. Throughout the grief for myself and those who knew her, my group of friends and I began to put together a memorial for her that was held that Wednesday at Austin Christian Fellowship. The memorial consisted of a speech from different people and a slideshow of all of the photos that she took throughout her life, because she was an avid photographer. We sold little red ribbons to anyone who wanted them to help pay for the memorial and also set up an online donation so that Danielle could be buried in California where her father lives. It was so amazing for me to see all of the donations and people at the memorial who wanted to remember the life of the truly wonderful girl that I had the pleasure of knowing.

To remember the tough year that has passed with Danielle not here, her best friend Alayna Thomas set up a day last Sunday to release red balloons with notes tied to them that were written to her for anyone who wanted to participate. The balloon release took place at the 360 bridge outlook with many of Danielle’s friends’ and family there to release a balloon in her honor. I was able to take pictures of the event and it was a great experience to be able to connect with her through photography. As I face a new year without Danielle, I will always remember her through her legacy of love, smiles, and friendships that will ultimately last a lifetime.

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