‘I’m Just Going To Miss Everything About Him’: Brent Taylor’s Mother, Brother Talk About How They Will Remember Him
NORTH OGDEN, Utah – As the family of North Ogden mayor Brent Taylor waits on the East Coast to bring his body home, they talked about how proud they were of him.
Taylor, a major in the Utah National Guard, was killed in Afghanistan on Saturday. He had volunteered for a NATO mission helping to train members of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces. While on a foot patrol Saturday, the adjutant general of the Utah National Guard said, one of those Afghan commandos shot and killed him. The other Afghan commandos immediately killed the attacker. Another United States service-member was also injured in the attack.
Taylor’s mother, Tamara Taylor, said her sons became interested in the military at an early age.
“We found stories about military heroes in different wars and we’d always share them with the boys because it was such a good example of doing the right thing at the right time,” Tamara Taylor said.
Brent Taylor and his five brothers all joined the Utah National Guard as adults. Tamara Taylor said deployments were challenging, but rewarding.
“I could balance my fear and say, ‘It’s OK, I can deal with that and I can even deal with a loss if he’s making a difference and he’s feeling happy serving the people of this country,'” she said.
Taylor and his fellow soldiers in Afghanistan had worked to keep elections safe in Afghanistan. In his final Facebook post a few days before he was killed, he talked about how happy it made him to see Afghan people head to the polls despite the threat of violence. He said he hoped Americans would exercise their right to vote back home. He also said he wanted to see unity among Americans.
“‘We have more that unites us than divides us,’ was what he said. We need to get past Democrats and Republicans, all these groups that are splintered, and realize that we can work together,” Tamara Taylor said.
Taylor’s brother, Derek said he imagined his brother would want people to carry on the work he had been doing.
“I think he would also remind us of the obligation, that he paid the price and that’s ours, not just our family, millions of other service-members and their families, it’s our responsibility to now pick up what’s been dropped and carry it forward,” Derek Taylor said.