A self-confessed 'daddy's girl' has found a unique way to honor the memory of the father she adored – by having a talking tattoo inked on her left forearm, which plays his voice from beyond the grave.
Mom-of-two Yvette Moore, 40, was heartbroken when her dad Michael Goto died of liver cancer in 2013, aged 67 and, lost in grief, feared she might forget the sound of his voice.
Then, she spotted an Instagram post about a soundwave tattoo, which plays sound aloud using a special app, and decided it would be the perfect way to immortalize her father.
Now, when she holds her mobile phone over the inking on her left forearm it plays the sound of a video message Michael left for her children, Abigail, 13, and Michael, 10, during his treatment, in which he says: “Hi babies, thank you – I feel better already. I love you. I'll see you when I get back to the house. Bye bye."
Yvette, who works with developmentally disabled children and adults where she lives in Covina, California, with her husband Michael, 45, said: “I was so close to my dad. We spent so much time together going swimming and on fishing trips, and he taught me all these skills like DIY and fixing my car – as well as more emotional things, like how to be strong and independent.
“After he died, I did worry about forgetting his voice. The last thing I wanted was for my memories of him to dwindle. But now, he's immortalized and I can hear him whenever I need to. It's nice for Abigail and Michael, who is named after my dad, to hear their granddad's voice, too."
Yvette and her dad Michael (PA Real Life/Collect)
Full of love and laughter, the childhood Yvette shared with Michael and the rest of her family was a happy one.
Dubbing herself a “daddy's girl," she said she loved nothing more than spending time with her father and was devastated in 2010, when he was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer.
She explained: “Doctors gave him six months, but in the end, he managed to fight for three years."
Yvette got a soundwave tattoo in her father's memory (PA Real Life/Collect)
She continued: “Towards the end, it was very hard for him, but he still did all he could to make sure everything was in its place for the rest of us. He paid off all his bills, fixed up the house when he was able and even planned his own services, so we wouldn't have to.
“That was him, though – always thinking of others.
“He was very independent, but I wanted to be there for him while he was ill, so I was by his side at every treatment, with a list of my own questions for the doctor and even helped change his diet, so he could be as healthy as possible."
Yvette's tattoo (PA Real Life/Collect)
While her father was still alive, Yvette decided to get a tattoo to honor him – an inking of a black widow spider on her shoulder, to match a similar design he had.
“He saw it and really liked it," she added. “I wish he'd had the chance to see the soundwave tattoo, because he'd have loved it."
And, a couple of years after Michael passed away on March 31, 2013, Yvette, who wanted another tattoo in his memory, was browsing Instagram when she spotted a post about soundwave inkings.
Yvette and her dad Michael with their matching spider tattoos (PA Real Life/Collect)
Created in 2017 by artist Nate Siggard, who went viral after sharing a video of his own tattoo, they take sounds and encode them into designs, which can then be played back via an app called Skin Motion.
Users have had everything from barking dogs to their favorite songs immortalized on their skin.
But, for Yvette, there was only one sound she knew she wanted to hear forever – her dad Michael's voice.
Yvette got her father's voice immortalized via a tattoo (PA Real Life/Collect)
With only a few artists licensed to create soundwave tattoos, as they are relatively new, Yvette ended up being tattooed by Nate himself, after he advertised online that he would be doing the inkings at a fundraising event last year.
So, after booking an appointment, she then began searching for the right audio clip.
“I searched and searched for anything I had that had Dad's voice," she explained. “Then, I found a video we had taken in the hospital one day after he'd had a treatment."
Yvette as a teenager (PA Real Life/Collect)
She added: “He had been recovering, and wanted to record a message for his grandchildren, who'd sent him a good luck video but couldn't come and see him in person as they were still so young then.
“In the recording, he says, 'Hi babies, thank you – I feel better already. I love you. I'll see you when I get back to the house. Bye bye.'
“I chose it because it was lovely to hear him saying, 'I love you,' and also because it was a message for Abigail and Michael, so they could hear their granddad talk to them too."
Yvette getting her tattoo done (PA Real Life/Collect)
In total, the tattoo cost Yvette around $150, plus the $39.99 app fee, and she has praised Nate for his professionalism and artistry.
She added: “I had worried the audio file wouldn't work, because it was such an old recording, but after waiting about 24 hours for the app to be activated, I was able to play it. I did so at home with my children – the voices Dad was talking back to in the video.
“It was so comforting to hear, but also bittersweet. It brought back all that encouragement and support he gave me, and reminded me to stay strong and keep going, just like he taught – but of course, I still miss him and it hurts."
Yvette's tattoo right after she had it done (PA Real Life/Collect)
Now, Yvette, who also has tattoos of a tiger and cherry blossom mural on her back and a songbird on her leg, continues to treasure her inking, which she says amazes everyone who hears it played.
She added: “At first glance, people often think it's a lifeline, but when I show them using the Skin Motion app that it's my dad's voice, they're amazed. It almost works like a QR code, scanning the image and playing the sound from my phone.
“Now, I'd say I play it a couple of times a month – maybe more in the rough times."
Yvette's back tattoo (PA Real Life/Collect)
She concluded: “I'd like others who have lost someone to know that this is possible, and that these amazing tattoos do work.
“I love that I can hear my father's voice forever now, whenever I need to."