‘It represents so much love and compassion:’ the family of Brent Taylor settles into their new home

Jul 14, 2022, 1:55 PM | Updated: Jul 26, 2022, 3:36 pm

NORTH OGDEN, Utah – A house may be made up of four walls and a roof overhead, but a home is so much more.

The Taylor family will now know as they received the keys to their new home on Thursday.

Brent Taylor, a major in the Utah National Guard, was also serving as mayor of North Ogden when he was shot and killed in Afghanistan in 2018. 

His family includes his wife, Jennie Taylor, and their seven children.

Soon after Brent’s passing, the Have a Heart Home Foundation, along with Nilson Homes of South Ogden, reached out to Jennie and told her they wanted to build her family a new home.

“They said, ‘please don’t say no yet. I don’t know if you understand what we’re trying to offer you,’” Jennie recalls.

Fast forward to the present, Jennie and their seven kids, the youngest, 4-years-old, and the oldest, nearly 17-years-old, received the keys to their new home, filled with Brent’s memory. 

“You walk in, and the first thing you see, we’ve got this front living set up with hair, some mementos of my husband’s service, our big family picture, and we’ve got his uniform in a shadow box,” Jennie said.

Smaller nods are just as close to their hearts, too, including teddy bears made of Brent’s shirts. 

Like a plaque in Jennie’s office that reads, “You’ve got this.” Jennie said those were the words Brent texted her after she and her kids dropped him off for the last time.

“It represents so much love and compassion,” Jennie said.

All of these pieces and mementos point to their love for Brent and the new home that paints a bright new future.

“It’s more than just the wood, the drywall, and the paint. It’s the love of a community that has embraced us and kept us safe and kept us hopeful – kept us looking forward while being mindful of our past,” said Jennie. 

Jennie said they’ll be going to bed with a smile at bedtime. 

“I think we’re gonna sleep pretty darn well when we get in there for sure,” Jennie expressed. 


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‘It represents so much love and compassion:’ the family of Brent Taylor settles into their new home