As I write this, we still don’t know why 17-year-old Krissy Taylor died so tragically on July 2; maybe by the time this issue reached you, the doctors will have figured it out. What we do know is that Krissy was a sweet, generous, loving person who had a smile that could light up any room—and she was beautiful inside as well as out.

We met Krissy when she was just starting out in the modeling biz, and we loved her from second one. We were out-of-control excited when she told us that the cover shoot she did with Dan Cortese for the August 1993 issue was one of her fave jobs.

For most people, having a supermodel like Niki for a sister would be mega-tough, but not for Krissy. She always said that her sis was her best friend and that there was zero competition between them. Scott Teitler, who shot this month’s cover of Niki and who often worked with the Taylor sisters, says, “Krissy’s beauty was all about being true to herself, not trying to be like everyone else.”

In Krissy’s memory, we’ve made a donation to the DISHES project (Determined Involved Supermodels Helping End Suffering). One of her favorite charities, it’s dedicated to raising funds and promoting compassion for children with HIV and AIDS.

We’ll never forget you, Krissy.

Written by Sally Lee, editor-in-chief of Young & Modern magazine, a teen girls’ publication in the United States.