York County man's memory lives on in fundraiser to fight addiction

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Posted at 7:26 AM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 07:35:44-05

JAMES CITY COUNTY, Va. - He was funny, loved to dance and played a lot of sports.

But most importantly, Ryan Taylor was loved by his family and others who knew him.

That's how Mary Brown remembers her son nearly three years after his death to overdose in January 2019.

Just days before, Brown recalls spending the day with Taylor, who was determined to beat his addiction with the help of a local treatment facility.

“He really, really wanted to move forward to get into Faith Recovery and so I wanted him to go that day but he said, ‘Come back and pick me up on Tuesday’ and Tuesday didn’t come for us," Brown told News 3

Since then, she and her family have raised nearly $20,000 for a scholarship in Ryan's name at Faith Recovery.

Formerly called Youth Challenge of Hampton Roads, the addiction treatment center in Newport News is faith-based and requires those who enter to live away from home while they recover.

“This is a way for people to stay in there for a year and really learn who they are and learn who they are without the addiction and work on their mental health issues and it’s just an amazing program that we really are lucky to have in this community," said Brown.

But it comes at a cost and that's where the scholarship comes in.

On Saturday, November 13, Taylor's family is hoping to raise even more money through the Ryan Taylor Golf Tournament at Colonial Heritage Golf Club on Richmond Road in James City County.

“It’s been three years Mary’s been working with us and years from now we’re going to look and back and say ‘look at the legacy Ryan left,'" said Mandi Sabo, Development Director for Faith Recovery. "It just means the world to us to have somebody that cares…and the people in the program? They know somebody is rooting for them.”

Taylor loved golf, his family says, and they're excited to honor him this way.

A $100 entry fee will all be donated to Taylor's scholarship at Faith Recovery. Registration can be done in advance or in-person on Saturday starting at 9 a.m.

A shotgun start is scheduled for 10 a.m.