By Russ Owens
WAUSAU (WAOW)- 16-year old Taylor Hartwig has had to battle through quite a lot through her life so far to be able to play the sport that she loves.
Back in 2005, in the span of about a year, this little girl not only had to start her fight against juvenile diabetes but also had to have a massive tumor removed from the back of her neck. Both nearly cost Taylor her life.
Says Ann Hartwig, "We both were afraid of Leukemia or something, we didn't know. Finally she said 'daddy I'm dying, I'm dying, I need to go somewhere."
Says Dave Hartwig, "I can't even look back and think about it anymore."
Says Ann Hartwig, "It was one thing after another, we just couldn't believe it, it was unbelievable."
Says Taylor Hartwig, "I felt helpless and really all I kept thinking about was, I gotta get stronger so I can bowl and play sports, because I love sports."
A nearly seven hour procedure to rumove the tumor done by a specialist in Minnesota saved her, but there was bad news about her right arm she used to bowl with.
Doctors told her that she would never be able to move her arm again to play sports, but now after six plus years of rehab, her arm is almost at full strength and she is bowling once again.
Says Taylor, "I mean it does get draining, but I keep thinking bowling is what motivates me, that's mostly what I do."
Says Ann Hartwig, "This littler girl, I mean if there is such thing is a miracle, I know God has big plans for this girl."
Now not only is she hitting the lanes but Taylor is one of the best female bowlers in the state of Wisconsin playing with the DC Everest reserve squad. In the state tournament this March, Taylor finished in the top 30.
Says Taylor, "Being able to just go out there and bowl, I'm amazed, pretty much everytime I step out there, I'm astonished, just watching my bowl roll down, it's awesome how I can actually do it."
Says Dave Hartwig, "That's all that matters is she's able to do it."
Says Ann and Dave Hartwig, "There's a message to children for you parents, don't ever give up, there's hope."
Taylor's journey isn't done though, she already has colleges looking at her because of her bowling skills and could land a scholarship in the future.
Online Reporter- Russ Owens