Texas family fulfills daughter’s last wish of being an author

Family fulfills daughter's last wish: to be an author

(Gray News) - A Pilot Point family is fulfilling their young daughter's last wish to be an author in a book called "Vail's Tales," which was published this month.

“The day before she died, she said to both of us that her dream was to be an author when she grew up and that she wanted to have her stories published,” Vail’s mother, Susan Chance, told KXII.

In August 2016, Vail Johnson passed away unexpectedly in her sleep from a heart condition called myocarditis.

She was only 9-years-old.

Just days before she died, she told her parents that she dreamed of being an author, so they took action.

“We had all of her books. We decided that we were going to try to find an author and try to help rewrite her books so that there could be proper spelling, proper punctuation. You know, she was so young when she wrote them,” Chance said.

Vail’s mom and step-dad, Susan and Chad Chance, compiled four of her stories she had written and got in touch with Atlanta author, Ed Payne.*

Payne helped tell the stories inspired by Vail’s books she wrote at school, but they made sure to include her original writing and illustrations.

It’s called “Vail’s Tales.”

“It’s a window into her soul. She had a sweet, sweet soul. She was an awesome kid,” Chad Chance said.

Vail’s parents started the Friends of Vail foundation in her honor to inspire learning within their community.

Proceeds from the book’s sales will go toward the foundation, which has provided thousands in scholarships for Texas kids.

“One of our friends said that she did more in nine years than most people do in a lifetime. I mean we heard so many stories of people she touched and had conversations with,” Chad Chance said.

Vail’s parents say she loved animals, playing softball and of course, writing.

“Vail’s Tales” can be purchased on Amazon, or online at most bookstores.

* Note: Ed Payne is an employee of Gray Television Group, Inc.

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