RIDGEWOOD, N.J. -- An Oktoberfest fundraiser named for a Ridgewood triplet who was 7 when she died of a rare lung disease two autumns ago is set for Saturday.
The 1 p.m. event at the Stable in Ridgewood will benefit the Taylor C Aguilar Memorial Scholarship Fund, established to help parents of special needs children who are enduring the same hardships as Taylor's have.
"Whether that means helping someone with their medical funding, helping someone receive the treatments or therapies needed, or sending a child to a camp for the summer, they would like to use the funds raised to help others who are faced with these type of challenges or have undergone lengthy hospitalizations or suffered traumatic events," organizers said.
Taylor, who was born with Down Syndrome, began suffering from prolonged fevers and rashes when she was 2 and was diagnosed with System Onset Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.
It later progressed to her lungs, causing a severe interstitial disease.
Taylor -- whose father, Mike, is a captain with the Glen Rock Fire Department -- was hospitalized for lengthy stays. She also was put on a ventilator and ultimately had a tracheotomy.
She underwent several surgeries and was ventilator-dependent for the last year of her life.
Taylor came home from the hospital in early October 2014 -- and just nine days later died due to a ventilator malfunction.
Although critically ill for the last years of her life, Taylor was "a very feisty and spirited little girl who loved her 3 brothers" -- MJ and John and younger brother Max, organizers said.
The Taylor Aguilar Memorial Scholarship Fund recently helped a young Ridgewood adult with autism.
Taylor's parents hope they can do the same for so many more.
Tickets are $40 for adults, $15 or children over 5 and free for those under five.
Food will be unlimited -- Sauerbraten, knockwurst, red cabbage, potato pancakes and more -- as will be soft drinks and beer.
The bands Thurday Eve Collective and The Dads' Night Band will perform.
There will also be face painting, pumpkin decorating and bobbing for apples, as well as a tricky tray and 50./50.
The Stable is at 259 North Maple Ave, Ridgewood.
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