While Taylor Anderson's life was cut short on March 11, 2011, along with thousands of others caught in the massive tsunami triggered by an earthquake off the coast of Tohoku, the full life she led was a source of inspiration for an American documentarian who chronicled her life.

"It's a short time, but if you use it, it's meaningful," Regge Life, the director of "Live Your Dream: The Taylor Anderson Story," said in a recent interview at the Japan Society in New York.

"It's not the time, it's what you do with the time," he added, noting that the brief stint the Virginia native spent in Japan positively impacted others.