Losing a loved one is always a traumatic and deeply depressing experience, especially when that person is your own parent. Really, the only thing worse than losing one parent unexpectedly is losing two, which unfortunately is exactly what happened to the Young family.
Within a short succession, siblings Christian, Keira, and Kaley Young lost not only their mother but a few short years later, their father as well — Keith Young, a New York City fireman.
They were determined to keep their father’s legacy alive, appearing on the show Shark Tank recently to present a product he invented, a new type of cutting board.
Like many of the other brave men and women of the FDNY, Keith was one of the first responders on the scene back on September 11, 2001, when the Twin Towers of the NYC’s World Trade Center collapsed.
After experiencing this tragedy, Keith went on to follow another passion of his, throwing himself into the world of cooking. It was during this time that he came up with the idea for his invention. Unfortunately, as he was working on the prototype in 2012, he had the bad luck of being front and center to another tragedy. Breast cancer struck his wife Elizabeth, who passed away shortly after.
As expected, the following years were quite rough for the Young family. During this mourning period, Keith dove even deeper into his passion for cooking and was even to able to gain a spot on the Food Network cooking series, Chopped. All this time spent cooking reminded him once again of his product idea. Soon after, the first prototype of the Cup Board Pro was finally created. He even made a video of himself demonstrating the product which he used as a Shark Tank audition tape.
In an interview with Inside Edition, daughter Kaley discussed the product:
“Our dad’s dream was to go on Shark Tank with this invention.”
Sadly, the short video was as close as he ever got to realizing this dream.
Like so many of the other heroes who raced to Ground Zero on 9/11, Keith fell ill with cancer as a result of exposure to the toxic dust from the debris at the scene. In what would be the second tragedy for the Young family in recent years, Keith succumbed the cancer and passed away in the beginning of 2018.
His children couldn’t bring themselves to let their father’s dreams of making it on Shark Tank die with him. All three siblings decided to appear on the show in his place to present the Cup Board Pro, and the panel of judges were noticeably moved by the story.
The decision was unanimous, with all five judges choosing to come together and invest in the business in honor of Keith and his family. It seems that it was really a pretty great product as well.
Since the episodes airing, the Cup Board Pro has sold out on Amazon, which means over a million units have been purchased. Thanks to Christian, Keira, and Kaley, as well as the Sharks, it is certain that Keith Young’s memory will now continue long into the future.
Watch the awesome moment below.
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