Peyton Today

8 of 13
It was shortly after Erin's death that Doug began showing Peyton the tapes. "At first it was kind of emotional for me to hear her voice, see her face, hear her laugh again," says Peyton, who is now 13. "I had seen her the night before she had died, and then I had been at her funeral. Then I saw her first tape and it was like, 'Wow, she's back.' It feels like I'm having a conversation with her even though she can't hear me."

Peyton has now watched or listened to 12 of the more than 100 video and audiotapes left by her mother. "It made me feel very special to see all those tapes," Peyton says. "I guess it was just showing me how much she really loved me. When most people lose a loved one, they forget all about what they look like. With mom's videotapes that she made, I know what she looks like—I can still hear her voice. … I can feel her love."

Erin's tapes also serve a very practical purpose! "If I have a question or there's something I don't know what her opinion would be, it's kind of like a dictionary," Peyton says. "I can go and look it up, and she's right there telling it to me."