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Who was Kathryn Irene Taylor (KIT)?

Kathryn Irene Taylor (KIT)

Kathryn Irene Taylor was born in 1958. At that time Cystic Fibrosis was a new disease that was yet to be recognized by many physicians. She had major surgery within the first 18 hours of her life and was the first to survive that surgery in a large Long Island Hospital.

Kit always had a strong will to survive at a time when 70% of CF babies died before their 1st Birthday. Life expectancy was 5 years. She was a pioneer in treatment in those early days of mist tents, pancreatic granules, and primitive postural drainage equipment. A pioneer on the long road to a fuller life and improved treatments, Kit loved life and lived it fully. She fought heroically. She always had compassion for others. She was a bright and gifted student. She devoted her life to learning and to intellectual growth. She was a senior in college with a double major. Her message of hope sustained her. Her dream was to keep hope alive. She wanted us to continue the fight against Cystic Fibrosis.

Her struggle ended at age 21 and she wanted to be remembered.

Our fight and our hope go on as we honor her life and her wishes with the annual Kit Taylor Memorial Lectureship.

The Kit Taylor Memorial Fund for Education in Cystic Fibrosis

The Kit Taylor Memorial Fund for Education in Cystic Fibrosis was established in 1981 through the love and generosity of family and friends in memory of a young woman who died of CF at the age of 21.

The purposes of the fund are:

  • To provide continuing educational opportunities in cystic fibrosis to health professionals.
  • To recognize doctors, nurses, and social workers for the support they provide.
  • To establish a living memorial to continue the message of hope and concern for others.

The annual Kit Taylor Memorial Lecture is designed to be an educational forum for community physicians, residents and staff as well as an acknowledgement of the support that these individuals provide to families living with CF. It involves an evening presentation and reception for the community with a video broadcast of the lecture for those who cannot attend. Pediatric Grand Rounds are held the following morning.

Each year we have been especially honored to be able to welcome nationally and internationally respected researchers and clinicians to this lecture who are recognized as experts and leaders in their specialized field. Guest speakers have presented such topics as latest improvements in care, newborn screening, new therapies, genetics, and lung transplants.

The Lectureship is sponsored by the Kit Taylor Memorial Fund and the Department of Pediatrics, University of Rochester Medical Center.