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First Doctor Killed in Iraq

Discussion in 'Military Medicine' started by frmertd, Apr 27, 2004.

  1. frmertd

    frmertd Junior Member

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    Fallen Soldier Honored, Buried In Stockton
    Taylor's Purple Heart, Bronze Star Awarded To Family

    POSTED: 6:01 pm PDT April 16, 2004
    UPDATED: 6:16 pm PDT April 16, 2004

    STOCKTON, Calif. -- The first U.S. military doctor to be killed in combat since the Vietnam War was buried in Stockton Friday with full military honors.

    Stockton native Lt. Col. Mark Taylor was a surgeon with the 82nd Airborne serving in Fallujah, Iraq. He was killed in Iraq last month during a rocket attack, according to military officials.
    "We came under rocket attack, and one of the rockets landed about 10 to15 feet away from where a large group of them were standing. Unfortunately, we weren't able to save him," said Army physician Lt. Col. George Bal.
    "He was a healer who brought good medicine to bad places. As long as there are wars and rumors of war, our nation will have heroes to stand in that gap, and to stop evil people from encroaching on our liberties and homes," said Chaplain Capt. Harold Cline.
    A Stockton church was filled to overflowing with soldiers, strangers, family and friends -- all sharing a common emotion of sadness for a fallen soldier.
    "Certainly, in this time, in this conflict, this escalated conflict, we need to show support for all those over there, men and women, defending the freedom," said Stockton Mayor Gary Podesto.
    Taylor's family was awarded his Purple Heart and a Bronze Star.
    At first, the family wanted to bury Taylor in Arlington National Cemetery, but decided instead to keep him closer to home.
     
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  3. frmertd

    frmertd Junior Member

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    Friends and family bid a final farewell to Major Mark Taylor on Friday. The Army surgeon from Stockton was killed last month during a rocket attack in Fallujah.

    Taylor was on duty on March 20 when his unit came under fire. "He and several soldiers were standing outside and we came under a rocket attack and one of the rockets happened to land 10 or 15 feet away from where a large group of them were standing," said Lt. Col. George Bal, a surgeon in Taylor's unit. "We weren't able to save him."

    Taylor had fulfilled his military commitment and could have left the service for a lucrative private practice. instead, he decided to stay in the service, a decision his father said was motivated by a desire to care for soldiers. "I talked to him about being an Army doctor," said Doug Taylor, the slain man's father. "He said, 'Dad, I can't think of a finer calling than taking care of our troops.' That says it all."

    A member of the highly regarded 82nd Airborne, Mark Taylor received the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, and a posthumous promotion to Lieutenant Colonel.

    The loss of Taylor has left his family stunned. "He was a patriot, a fine man, a doctor, a surgeon, and we're devastated," said his father.

    Taylor was just weeks from returning home when he was killed. He had planned to take an Army fellowship at U.C. Irvine, where he could hone his skills and be closer to his six-year-old son.
     
  4. frmertd

    frmertd Junior Member

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  5. Apollyon

    Apollyon Screw the GST
    Physician Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    I just finished Ob down in Fayetteville, and one of the attendings was telling me how LTC Taylor was a close personal friend of her and her husband (who is a doc at Womack, and formerly had deployed with the 505th). Bummer.
     
  6. entpa

    entpa Member
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    Condolences to family and friends Maj (MD) Taylor. The one thing you find in the military is that it is a small world. You will lose friends. There have been other doctors killed in combat since Vietnam. It is easy to forget them. Dr Koritz shotdown over Irag 17-18 Jan 91. He was in my unit as a flight surgeon. He was an F-15E pilot and physician.
     

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