Retired Valley educator remembers Utah mayor who was killed in Afghanistan
PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- Family, friends and loved ones are devastated by the loss of the mayor of North Ogden, Utah, Brent Taylor.
Taylor was killed in Afghanistan, while on deployment. Before his time in Utah, Taylor was a Chandler High School graduate, and on Monday, the school's retired principal, Terry Williams, spoke about Taylor.
Williams knew Taylor when he was just a young man in the 7th grade, and said the young mayor, father and friend will be greatly missed.
"I'll miss him a great deal," said Williams. "I'll never get over him, I'll never forget him."
Williams was Taylor's history teacher in the 7th grade, and said Taylor loved politics and government from a very young age.
"Whether it was a political election during history, or the Civil War, or the settling of the West or something like that, he loved to talk and get more detail," said Williams.
Williams linked back up with Taylor when he taught at Chandler High. By that time, Taylor was a senior. Since then, the two have kept in touch over the years. Williams never doubted that Taylor would go far in life.
"I said when you get to be President some day, you need to invite me to the White House," said Williams. "Don't forget me, invite me to that White House, and give me the special tour where no one gets to go."
Taylor, who served on the Utah Army National Guard, was on his 4th deployment. He was killed in Afghanistan on Saturday, when a member of the Afghan national defense and security forces opened fire. In one of his last posts on social media, Taylor praised Afghans for voting in their first election in years.
Meanwhile, Williams is hoping people will learn from Taylor's story, and exercise their right to vote.
"It kind of hit home for me that tomorrow when I do vote, it's going to mean something special to me," said Williams. "It's like, this one's for you, Brent."
Taylor's remains are said to arrive in the United States on Tuesday, according to the Department of Defense.