TAYLOR AND DANIELLE: An unstoppable love story - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

TAYLOR AND DANIELLE: An unstoppable love story

Posted:
Courtesy Tim Dodd Photography Courtesy Tim Dodd Photography
CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) -

It's a love story that's inspiring strength in people around the world.

In May, an improvised explosive device, also known as an IED, detonated under United States Navy EOD Technician Taylor Morris' feet. The Cedar Falls native lost both legs, and portions of both arms. A blog documenting his progress has recorded more than 1.5 million hits from 20 different countries.

The majority of that blog is written by Morris' longtime girlfriend, Danielle Kelly. KWWL'S Colleen O'Shaughnessy sat down with the pair during a short visit home in October. She received an inside look at their love, passion and patience for each other as Morris adjusts to life as a quadruple amputee.

"We just love being together. We genuinely enjoy each other's presence. I think, that's a pretty special thing to have," said Morris.

Morris and Kelly's love story begins in the Cedar Valley. Among other things, over a shared passion for Mexican food.

When he joined the Navy and worked his way up to EOD Technician, they understood the inherent risk. But there is no way to plan for a life without a hand to hold.

"Those little things are one of the more hard things. Like, not being able to hold his hand while walking down the street," said Kelly.

"For little things like that. Yeah, they're different," Morris agreed. "Can't reach out and grab your hands. But now she reaches out and grabs the nub. And just likes to hold onto that."

They've approached life after the explosion with a sense of humor, and a great deal of patience. The pair also decided, early on, to document Morris' progress online so friends and family could keep up with his daily trip-ups and triumphs. Then, suddenly, the number of "views" began to skyrocket.

"We started to get comments from, I'm a mother of this person who knows you through this and this person. And I live in Africa," said Kelly.

Morris and Kelly's story made national headlines when pictures snapped by their friend Tim Dodd went viral. "A Love Story in 22 Pictures" is now up to four million views and counting.

"Why, I don't know. Everybody loves a good love story, right?" Morris noted.

But their love is much more than any picture can truly capture. Always each other's biggest supporter, Kelly is now at the center of Morris' recovery.

When they're faced with a situation his prosthetics can't handle, she becomes his legs.

When her heart feels like it will break, his is there to keep it together.

"When I'm having an off day, she's usually having an on day. And vice versa. That's one thing that always helps out," said Morris.

The explosion took away his limbs. But even a blast that strong couldn't shake their bond.

"You know that's a pretty tried and tested relationship. I would say. You know, I don't see any other obstacle that would be bigger than this that would come along," said Morris.

"As much has changed through his injuries and everything -- nothing's changed between us. It just seems like just another day. Every day has its problems. We just have a different problem to conquer each day. We just get through each day, one by one," said Kelly.

They'll conquer each day, each step, each bowl of salsa, together. Because Kelly may not be able to hold Morris' hand. But she holds his heart, as he does hers.

The couple said they do want to get married, although those plans are delayed as he recovers. Their long-term plan is to move home to the Cedar Valley. For the time being, they're living off-base at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center while Morris continues his rehabilitation.

  • NEWSNEWSMore>>

  • Toddler crashes Jeep, runs home to watch cartoons

    Toddler crashes Jeep, runs home to watch cartoons

    Monday, July 28 2014 7:08 AM EDT2014-07-28 11:08:14 GMT
    Police say a toddler crashed a Jeep into an Oregon home, then ran back to his home to watch cartoons.More >>
    Police say a toddler crashed a Jeep into an Oregon home, then ran back to his home to watch cartoons.More >>
  • Renters may have changes coming their way

    Renters may have changes coming their way

    Monday, July 28 2014 6:12 AM EDT2014-07-28 10:12:51 GMT
    The idea of living in a four-bedroom apartment with three unrelated roommates, may be coming to a stop in Cedar Falls. Task Force Member, Fred Abraham, has proposed the idea of reducing the maximum number of unrelated renters in a single-family home from four to three. He also think that any single family homes that are converted into rentals should either rent only to families or to no more than two unrelated people. His ideas behind these proposals is to reduce density and "preserve the cha...More >>
    The idea of living in a four-bedroom apartment with three unrelated roommates, may be coming to a stop in Cedar Falls. Task Force Member, Fred Abraham, has proposed the idea of reducing the maximum number of unrelated renters in a single-family home from four to three. He also think that any single family homes that are converted into rentals should either rent only to families or to no more than two unrelated people. His ideas behind these proposals is to reduce density and "preserve the cha...More >>
  • Goodwill closes one store, builds another

    Goodwill closes one store, builds another

    Monday, July 28 2014 4:27 AM EDT2014-07-28 08:27:14 GMT
    Goodwill Industries of Northeast Iowa plans to close its store in the Crossroads Center area, and build a new one.For the last 5-6 years Goodwill has been working towards getting away from leased facilities and towards owning their own facilities. The current store in one of the older units in the area, and is very dated, according to a Goodwill employee. There is also current concerns with security issues and safety problems. The store will be less square footage, but according to Chris Hars...More >>
    Goodwill Industries of Northeast Iowa plans to close its store in the Crossroads Center area, and build a new one.For the last 5-6 years Goodwill has been working towards getting away from leased facilities and towards owning their own facilities. The current store in one of the older units in the area, and is very dated, according to a Goodwill employee. There is also current concerns with security issues and safety problems. The store will be less square footage, but according to Chris Hars...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KWWL. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Sandy Youngblut at 319-291-1259. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.