CINCINNATI - What would you do if you found out you only had a few months to live?
This is the story of Zach Sobiech, a teen whose terminal cancer diagnosis encouraged him to live out his life to the fullest.
The 18-year-old Minnesota man was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a cancerous bone tumor, when he was just 14 years old. Multiple surgeries and months of chemotherapy proved unsuccessful; and in May of 2012, doctors found cancer in Zach's lungs and pelvis. He was given only a few months to live when his mother suggested he start writing some letters to people. But Zach's pen-to-paper efforts became so much more.
Zach immortalized himself in his family and friends' minds and hearts through songs that he wrote for them, and one in particular, " Clouds", became a YouTube sensation.
But "Clouds" didn't just stop at YouTube views. After the video went viral and captured the hearts of millions, Broadcast Music, Inc., a performing rights organization, signed Zach.
Actor/comedian Rainn Wilson was moved by Zach's story, and Wilson's YouTube channel, SoulPancake, created a short documentary about the teen called " My Last Days: Meet Zach Sobiech." "Clouds" has even reached the No. 1 spot on the iTunes store.
MEET ZACH SOBIECH
SoulPancake even created a celebrity music video, featuring stars like Bryan Cranston, Sarah Silverman, Jenna Elfman, Jason Mraz and Ashley Tisdale, all singing along to "Clouds."
Tragically, Zach succumbed to cancer this week on May 20, 2013. His hope: "I wanna be remembered as a kid who went down fighting – I didn't really lose."
The Sobiech family started the Zach Sobiech Osteosarcoma Fund to support research of this rare disease. Supporters can make donations to this organization to help other kids suffering from cancer.
Zach Sobiech touched the hearts of millions and spread joy wherever he went. Through his music, his actions and his simple words, he's is leaving the world a powerful, resounding message:
"You don't have to find out you're dying to start living."