Operation Turkey Live Moore Challenge

This morning I woke up (way too early thanks to my toddler) and began making breakfast as I usually do every morning. “Mama eats, Mama eats!” is yelled from the living room from the little. I drowsily look down at the oatmeal I am preparing.  My mind suddenly drifts back to a time when I would be awoken to the sound of the juice machine as Matt freshly squeezed orange juice and made oatmeal. He always made us breakfast even when he was sick.   Then it hit me, like a ton of bricks; Matt isn’t coming to Thanksgiving tomorrow.

My heart abruptly begins to ache and it is hard to catch my breath. I unexpectedly flashback to Thanksgiving last year; there was lots of planning and preparing to make sure Matt could eat a Thanksgiving meal up to his foodie standards (clearly he lived in Portland) and strict diet. His sister and brother-in-law even talked him into joining in on some Black Friday shopping. This resulted in Matt buying a random Santa suit, which he instantly came back to his aunt’s house and put on while he indulged in another round of Thanksgiving dinner. Normal! I still laugh at the ridiculousness of these silly memories and all I can think of this morning is: BUT HE WAS THERE!!!

The waves of grief pummel me with giant tears, loud gasps for air, and the physical feeling that an elephant is literally sitting on my entire body, as the magnitude of our life without Matt is once again present. It was the “ugly cry” in full effect! All I want to do was go into my room, crawl into my bed, and sleep the holiday away.

But then I suddenly remember my To Do List. On the agenda for today was to complete our #livemoorechallenge in honor of Matt.

Last year, Matt was so inspired by Anthony Presnell’s donation that he wanted to do something. Alone, Matt went to the store and then went to Portland Rescue Mission in downtown Portland, Oregon to drop off the food (somewhat of a BIG undertaking for a guy who had very little energy due to the chemo treatments). Matt beamed with excitement as two men helped unload the car and shared their gratitude with him. You see, it wasn’t about the recognition for Matt, it was seeing the joy in these men’s faces knowing that they would have a good meal for the holiday- despite their given circumstance. For Matt, this unconditional love for others was living!


Live Moore Challenge:

Today (with our 21 month old in tow) we collected two baskets filled with food. That’s 10 turkeys, 2 hams, lots of green beans, countless potatoes and yams, dinner rolls for days, 10 pumpkin pies, a giant cake, and flowers to brighten up the day. This is about double what Matt did last year! We then took it to the Salvation Army in central Tucson, Arizona. They recently put out a request for donations following a scare that they may not be able to feed their expected guest list and we couldn’t have that!

This morning we met a man who lost his home to a fire and miraculously made it out alive.  He was staying at the facility. He graciously helped us unload the car and shared with us how blown away he was by the generosity of others. I can’t help but smile knowing Matt would be so happy to hear this.

I am in awe of my husband- not only for his actions in giving to others BUT for his desire to inspire others to give back. Though Matt will not be eating Thanksgiving dinner with us tomorrow, he will be in our hearts and his legacy lives on.  

In Matt Moore’s name, operation Turkey Live Moore Challenge, complete!


We wish your family a HAPPY Thanksgiving and Live Moore!!!


  • Thank you for sharing your stories and keeping Matt’s memory alive. You are both such an inspiration to everyone, and your selfless acts of kindness set an example for us all to follow. Sending you love and the greatest respect this holiday season and always. Matt’s cousin Linda

    Linda Castro
  • Thank You Nikki. I will continue to Live Moore not only because of what Matt stood for and it was an honorable stand indeed. But also because Jesus said to love others as we would love ourselves. But thos year I will remember a Man that practiced what He believed in deed also. Love you Sister in Christ

    Daniel Herrera

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