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Olympic torch bearers

Members carry flame to 2002 Winter Games

Members of the Church invited to carry the Olympic torch as it wends its way to Salt Lake City prior to the 2002 Winter Olympics include:

Michael Taylor, right, stands with former BYU track coach, Clarence Robison.
Michael Taylor, right, stands with former BYU track coach, Clarence Robison. Photo: Courtesy Mike Taylor

Michael Taylor

OREM, Utah — Michael Taylor was 20 years old and serving a mission when he was paralyzed in an accident. His recovery was dramatic and within a year of the injury, he ran a marathon and became a member of the BYU track team. He wrote a book about his experiences with the intent of helping others conquer discouragement.

Now a member of the Orem 1st Ward, Orem Utah Stake, he has lobbied for the passage of several bills in the Utah Legislature, including a law aiding those seeking to find the burial location of deceased ancestors. In June 2001, he completed a three-year Church Service Mission at the Provo Deseret Industries where he taught computers and assisted the disadvantaged in learning better job skills.

He will carry the torch Feb. 5 in central Utah as part of a two-man team with Pat West. "Carrying the Olympic Torch allows me to carry on with what I feel my life's mission has been, serving God as I serve others," he said.

Jenny and Jason Pyle pose with their four children Joseph, Seth, David and Katie.
Jenny and Jason Pyle pose with their four children Joseph, Seth, David and Katie. Photo: Courtesy Pyle family

Jason and Jenny Pyle

LANCASTER, Calif. — For donating a portion of his liver to save his ailing son, Jason Pyle and his wife, Jenny, will carry the Olympic torch in the San Francisco Bay area in January 2002. They are members of the Joshua Ward, Lancaster California East Stake.

David Pyle, third son of Jason and Jenny, was two months old when he was diagnosed with a major liver disease. Sixteen months later he received a liver transplant from a cadaveric donor. Four months later, when David went into fulminate liver failure, he was back in the hospital on the transplant waiting list.

"Jason did not wait for the doctors to approach him to be a donor," said Jenny. "He was on the phone with the doctors and climbing all over them when they came to our room to let him be David's donor."

Doctor's removed one-third of Jason's liver for transplanting. Now 18 months later, both have recovered and are living normal lives.

"Jason and David are perfect examples of the Olympic theme, 'Light the fire within,' " Sister Pyle said.

Church News readers are encouraged to submit information and pictures about members of the Church who participate as torch bearers. E-mail: [email protected]

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