BUCKHANNON — Military life can be full of ups and downs, and French Creek resident David Taylor, can attest to that. “All three of my children made the decision to enter and proudly serve our country in the military,” he explained.
In recognition of the “ups” that come with military life, Taylor’s youngest daughter, Lauren Hope Taylor, is presently serving aboard the amphibious dock landing ship USS Comstock (LSD 45), which is currently stationed in the Pacific Ocean. She is a Cryptologic Technician (Technical) (CTT) Seaman and a 2019 graduate of Florida’s Williston High School.
As a CTT seaman, Lauren conducts Electronic Warfare in support of national and commanders tasking. She also operates and maintains electronic sensors and computer systems, collects, analyzes, exploits and disseminates Electronic Intelligence in accordance with fleet and national tasking, and provides Safety of Forces, Indications and Warning, Information Operations, and Anti-Ship Missile Defense. She is also responsible for providing technical and tactical guidance to Warfare Commanders and national consumers in support of surface, subsurface, air, and special warfare operations.
The USS Comstock (LSD 45) is the second ship to be named after the Comstock Lode, which is an early American pioneer mining site near Virginia City, Nevada. The Comstock Lode, founded in 1859, has become indelible in the history of our American West; it produced more than $500,000,000 in gold and silver.
In 1945, the original USS Comstock (LSD 19) was commissioned during the end of World War II, and later served in both the Korean and Vietnam Conflicts. It earned 10 battle stars for its service in the Korean War—the most awarded to a ship of this type. It also received a Meritorious Unit Commendation and six battle stars for its Vietnam War service. Its successor, the LSD 45, continues the rich naval tradition associated with the name, Comstock. Since its commissioning in February of 1990, Comstock has completed three extended deployments to the Western Pacific and Middle East Forces and has also completed one deployment to the Southern Pacific where it conducted counter narcotic operations.
Sailors aboard the Comstock have experienced the world—with port visits to the tropical climes, Asian shopping extravaganzas and stops in Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan. “Her extensive tours in the Arabian Gulf have been highlighted by visiting such ports as: Aquaba, Jordan; Manama, Bahrain; Kuwait City, Kuwait; and Jebel Ali, United Emirates. Other popular ports of call for Comstock have included: Mombasa, Kenya; Seychelles; Perth, Australia; and Hawaii. Not all the good liberty ports are overseas, however. Some of the best visits have been to some of America’s fine west coast cities, such as San Francisco and Monterey, California.
Mr. Taylor’s eldest daughter, Kaitlyn Faith Taylor-Doxie is also currently serving in the U.S. Navy and is stationed at the Marine Air Control Group 38 – a United States Marine Corps aviation command and control united, based at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. It is currently composed of five squadrons and one battalion, that provide the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing’s tactical headquarters, positive and procedural control to aircraft and air defense for the I Marine Expeditionary Force.
Kaitlyn was recently awarded the United States Fleet Marine Forces pin. Mr. Taylor explained, “The Fleet Marine Forces (FMF) are combined general and special purpose forces within the United States Department of the Navy that perform offensive amphibious or expeditionary warfare and defensive maritime employment.” Kaitlyn also recently received news that she earned Petty Officer 3rd Class and will therefore be pinned as an E4.
Like her sister, Kaitlyn is a 2018 graduate of Williston High School. She has served in the Navy for two years and is married to Daniel Doxie. The couple presently resides in San Diego, California.
Prior to his daughters’ service, Taylor’s late son, David Duane Taylor II, proudly served in the U.S. Marine Corps. He was a Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Specialist. At the young age 25, David was killed in Military Combat Action in Raqqa, Syria, on Sunday, July 16, 2017. His deployments took him around the globe—with two combat deployments to Afghanistan, and then off to Japan, South Korea and Jordan. At the time David II lost his life, he was affiliated with the People’s Protection Unit, also known as the Yekineyen Parastina Gel (YPG) - a United States led military coalition partner fighting the war on terror. David II was a 2011 graduate of West Marion High School in Ocala, Florida.
Their grandfather Harry Taylor, a U.S. Army veteran, is a resident of Hodgesville and their uncle, Ron Taylor lives in Buckhannon and is employed by the Upshur County Board of Education. Their grandmother, Betty R. Taylor, also of Buckhannon, recently passed after a hard-fought battle with cancer. Kaitlyn and Lauren’s mother lives at Ft. Mead in Maryland.
All three of the Taylor children have Walk of Valor banners on display at Jawbone Park. “When Create Buckhannon launched the project, David II’s application was the first submitted… and as they say, the rest is history,” Mr. Taylor expressed.