Losing a parent is a part of everyone’s life, but is something that isn’t anticipated to happen until the later years. For some people the reality comes sooner such as Taya Mikado and her sister Sam who lost their mother and father before the age of 20.
In 2012, the Mikado sisters lost their father Donald and found comfort within their mother Karen’s support and uplifting spirit, which helped them grieve and continue with life after her passing in early 2017.
19-year-old Taya Mikado put her dreams of receiving a law degree through the University of British Columbia and becoming a crown prosecutor on hold to come home and take care of her 17-year-old sister Sam. Taya is currently taking a few courses at the Lethbridge College, playing on the Kodiak women’s volleyball team and is helping coach her sisters high school volleyball team.
“I came home because I wanted to be with my sister and be here for her grade twelve year,” Said Taya… “She is mature enough to make her own decisions but I defiantly want to make sure that we both stay on track and see the great life our parents would have wanted for us.”
Following the death of their professional windsurfer and sports star father Donald, Mother Karen reminded them that when someone who is close to them life stops does not mean that their life should.
“It was very important to her to make sure that she was showing us that you can get through things like that and be happy,” said Taya. “You want to keep going and still see the good things in life.”
Both losses were difficult but the sisters found it most difficult to lose the woman who was their best friend and main role model.
“My mother was like my best friend, we would be on the phone and talk every day and she taught me to be very independent and to learn to live the best life I can on my own and I am so thankful for those traits,” Said Mikado.
Mother, Karen Mikado received her education in nursing through the Lethbridge College and the University of Lethbridge to later become the enthusiastic and inspiring instructor of the nursing program at the college.
The school approached the daughters of the encouraging instructor and wanted to honour her memory with a memorial scholarship of $2,000 for a hard working nursing student who is also partaking in school sports.
Taya says that the scholarship isn’t necessarily for the top student, but for the one who shows the true characteristics of what a nurse should be.
“It doesn’t matter what their academic grade is because my mom was not the most academic achieving person, as long as they have that extra inspiration and love to help others then they defiantly qualify,” said Taya.
The future is still unknown for the Mikado sisters but they are keeping their education a priority for their parents always pushed them to follow their dreams.
Taya’s grade six dream of becoming a crown prosecutor is still on the top of her lis,t along with her undergraduate degree in philosophy.
“My goal is for us to find some sort of education that will help us go through and carry on in life and see if we are able to live like our parents did,” said Taya.
With nothing but a world full of opportunity and optimistic values Taya and her sister Sam will continue to work towards the life that their parents wanted for them.