MOORE, Okla. - Taylor Mosmeyer was almost always happy, but now family and friends are left with the memories of this bright, smiling 13-year-old girl.
“She had the biggest heart," said Ashley Moomey, Taylor's softball coach. “She had the dedication and heart that every coach wishes that all of their players had.”
Family members say everything changed on August 8.
“It was a normal day,” said a family friend. “They were having fun, spending time with family, getting ready to go back to school and Taylor said she felt a headache come on.”
Family friends say the pain associated with the headache was so severe that Taylor couldn't even see. Her mother rushed her to Moore Medical Center, where she was then transferred to OU Children's Hospital.
Doctors soon discovered that Taylor was suffering from a brain arteriovenous malformation or AVM.
Dr. Richard Vertrees Smith, the medical director for neuroscience at Mercy Hospital, says AVM is a tangle of abnormal blood vessels that connect arteries and veins in the brain. It's an extremely rare condition that can have deadly consequences.
“It could be one in 1,000, maybe a little less than that,” said Dr. Smith. “It`s very uncommon and in the incidents of ruptures are even less common.”
Doctors attempted to remove the AVM, but Taylor died shortly after surgery on Sunday.
“It`s really hard,” said Alexis, Taylor's best friend. “She spent the night the day before it happened, so I was really shocked and in tears and shaking and freaked out because I was going to text her too that day.”
Alexis says she is at least thankful that she got to say goodbye to Taylor over the weekend.
“I told her I loved her and I held her hand,” said Alexis.
Dr. Smith says most people are born with AVM, and the condition can usually only be found on a CT scan or an MRI. Patients may not know they have one until getting a terrible headache or it ruptures, like Taylor's.
“They might have a convulsive seizure disorder because these AVMs irritate the brain and if that happens, that gives us at least an idea that maybe something like that is going on,” said Smith.
As family and friends move forward, they hope to raise awareness for AVMs so no other family has to feel the same pain.
“Maybe scan our kids when they visit their pediatrician yearly,” said a family friend. “Find a way to get this to where it doesn't happen to another family.”
There will be a 'Fight Like a Girl' fundraiser at the MGSA softball fields in Moore in October to raise awareness for AVMs.
An online account has been set up to help the family with medical bills and funeral expenses.