EXCLUSIVE: Sandy family hopes their tragic loss will save lives

- SANDY, Utah (ABC 4 News) - The Lindley family said their son Zach passed away last Wednesday after a nine month struggle in and out of the hospital and they hope his story will save other families from heartache.

The 18-year-old was longboarding on Sego Lily near Poppy Lane in Sandy on Dec. 6, 2011 when he and the driver of a car collided. He was not wearing a helmet.

Zach spent 72 days in the ICU shock trauma center at Intermountain Medical Center. The family lived for small signs from their son.

"Just little things that only parents would recognize," Rob Lindley, Zach's father, said.

Rob said the biggest miracle was when Zach puckered his lips and gave him a kiss.

"We were stunned," he said.

Zach had a major seizure in August that lasted nearly an hour. The family made the decision to let him go.

"I never imagined thinking of my child and returning him to the Lord," Lindley said.

Their hearts ache knowing Zach wasn't wearing a helmet, even though they constantly reminded him to. They hope other families will be spared the pain they're going through.

"Take it from an 18 year old who lost his twin brother," Adam Lindley said. "Helmets may not look fashionable, but they save lives. If my brother was wearing a helmet he may still be here."

The family can't stress enough how important it is to wear protective gear no matter if you are skateboarding, longboarding or riding a bike.

"Wear a helmet," Lindley added. "It's not cool to see what happened to Zach. He was a beautiful kid."

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