Family to hold public memorial service Friday for slain veteran

LANCASTER – The family of a 30-year-old Army veteran shot to death in Lancaster last month is holding a public memorial service this Friday.

Nathen Taylor will be honored and remembered from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., Friday, at the Antelope Valley Center for Spiritual Living, located at 1030 West Ave. L-8, in Lancaster.

“We’re asking everybody in the community to come out and show support for my brother because my brother supported this community,” said younger sister Rachel Taylor. “My brother went and fought three times overseas, twice in Iraq and once in Afghanistan… He fought for your freedom, so come out and show respect for him.”

Nathen Taylor, a former U.S. Sergeant, was shot and killed on Saturday, April 21, as he sat in a car outside of his brother’s home at 733 West Avenue H-7, in Lancaster.

Around 12:30 a.m., several men walked up to the car, one gunman fired several rounds into the vehicle, and then the men ran away, according to a news release issued by the Sheriff’s Department on the day of the shooting. Officials have no motive for the shooting, however, Rachel Taylor believes her brother may have been shot by thugs who mistook him for a gang member.

“They probably assumed that my brother was in a gang, that’s what it seems like it was,” Rachel Taylor said. “They do this for stripes and for reputation.”

Rachel Taylor said her brother was far removed from gangs or any type of gang violence. She said, after serving three tours of duty, her brother had come back to Lancaster and enrolled in computer courses at Antelope Valley College. She said their mother was relieved that her brother was finally out of harm’s way.

“My mother worried for days and days when my brother was deployed, calling Red Cross crying when she would see on the news that there was a bombing or there was a convoy that blew up,” Rachel Taylor said.  “She thought she could finally relax because her son is back, and then for him to get murdered so callously and so maliciously… it’s shaken the foundation of our family and there’s no way that we’re coming back from this, ever.”

Family members are pleading with the community to come forward with any information that would lead authorities to those responsible for the shooting death of Nathen Taylor. Those with information should contact the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Tipsters can remain anonymous by calling Crimestoppers at 800-222-TIPS.

Nathen Taylor’s family has also established a memorial fund. Those wishing to make a donation can visit any Antelope Valley Bank branch and request to donate funds to the Memorial Fund for Former Army Sgt. Nathen Taylor. Wire transfers or donations from out of state can also be made using the following routing account and savings account numbers – 122003396(routing #) and 3010473552 (savings acct #).

After the memorial service from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., Friday at 1030 West Avenue L8, the family will head to the Bakersfield National Cemetery, where Nathen Taylor will receive a formal military burial.

  3 comments for “Family to hold public memorial service Friday for slain veteran

  1. Ed Babcock
    May 29, 2012 at 3:19 pm

    we will not forget you brother! Your bravery and heroism will forever live on. Now it’s the communities turn, we cannot let our vets, or their families suffer any longer. Stand up to these thugs. Be American!!!

  2. TJ
    May 4, 2012 at 10:41 am


  3. Rachel
    May 4, 2012 at 2:30 am

    I love you brother

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