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McKenzie Noelle Wilson was a vibrant and vivacious 15-year-old who loved cheerleading, softball and spending time with her family and friends. Teachers, coaches, friends and schoolmates described her as a beautiful, kind, responsible and considerate young woman with a bubbly personality and ever-present smile, who went out of her way to make others feel special and cared for. She was also a deeply spiritual person, whose passion was to positively impact the lives of others, particularly young people.

On August 17, 2010, McKenzie passed away from a rare and sudden illness. As a result of the personal impact McKenzie made on so many people, more than 1,800 teens and adults attended her funeral and more than 2,500 people signed up as "friends" on the Facebook page "Remembering McKenzie Wilson." On September 16, 2010, her school retired her softball jersey number "as a lasting tribute to her kindness, spirit, talent and faith."

The Wilson family created The McKenzie Noelle Wilson Foundation to honor McKenzie's life and to continue her legacy, of positively impacting young people by helping them uncover their deeper life's meaning and purpose.

Excerpt from an essay by McKenzie's friend, Kourtney Gavin
    McKenzie showed us all that "Life isn't measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away". She captivated my heart along with many others. She showed me how important those around me are, and that I should never take them for granted, nor should I take advantage of any moment that I have. She lived her life to the fullest, she laughed a lot, loved with her whole heart, smiled through the tough times, and killed others with kindness. She had a heart of gold, and truly is a role model for me. I admire her so much. McKenzie is missed so much by all of us, but her spirit still lives with us, we see her signs every single day that she is still here, and her light shines through all of us.

"What an amazing young lady who touched us all in so many ways!!!"

"We love you and miss you more than you know, and you've touched so many people's lives. Thank you for showing us how to live life to the fullest"

"I will always remember u becuz u were always happy and nice to me."

"I don't know of another person who had such a positive outlook on the world."

"You were such an amazing girl. Your laugh and smile could brighten up any room. And your bubbly loving personality was loved by all."

Copyright 2013 The McKenzie Noelle Wilson Foundation, Jacksonville FL
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