Another U.S. service member is being treated for wounds, according to officials, and Taylor’s death was confirmed by North Ogden City Councilman Phil Swanson, who spoke with FOX 13 Salt Lake City.
Swanson described Taylor as a “one of a kind” person.
The married father of seven children and National Guard officer was deployed to Afghanistan in January for a 12-month tour of duty. Taylor previously served two tours in Iraq and one tour in Afghanistan.
“As the USA gets ready to vote in our own election next week, I hope everyone back home exercises their precious right to vote,” he wrote. “And that whether the Republicans or the Democrats win, that we all remember that we have far more as Americans that unites us than divides us. ‘United we stand, divided we fall.” God Bless America.”
At the time of his deployment in January, the intelligence officer explained he would be assigned to serve on an advisory team training the staff of an Afghan commando battalion.
“Right now there is a need for my experience and skills to serve in our nation’s long-lasting war in Afghanistan,” he said. “President Trump has ordered an increase in troops, and part of the new strategy focuses on expanding the capabilities of the Afghan commando units.”
Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, described Taylor’s death as “devastating” news.
“Brent was a hero, a patriot, a wonderful father, and a dear friend,” Sen. Hatch wrote on twitter. “News of his death in Afghanistan is devastating. My prayers and love are with Jennie and his 7 young children. His service will always be remembered.”
Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, wrote on Facebook that Taylor was “the definition of the term ‘public servant.'”
“In the coming days,” Sen. Lee wrote, “Utahns who never had the privilege of meeting Brent will learn what kind of man North Ogden and the Taylor family have lost, and will join them in grieving his tragic loss.”
Utah Governor Gary Herbert and Maj. Gen. Jefferson S. Burton of the Utah National Guard plan to speak this afternoon.
In a statement Saturday, Herbert called Taylor a “brave and selfless soldier,” the Salt Lake Tribune reported.
“The entire Herbert family mourns with this soldier’s family and we pray that their burdens may be lifted, and that the hearts of all Utahns will reach out to comfort them in their grief,” the governor added.
“My heart breaks for the loss and sacrifice of our soldier, particularly for the family,” Burton said in a statement, according to the Tribune. “I wish them all the comfort and courage to face the difficult days ahead.”
In another Facebook post in January, Taylor explained what it meant to him to serve as a guardsman and public servant.
“Serving as the mayor of North Ogden city has been one of the greatest honors of my life and the highlight of my civilian professional career,” Taylor wrote. “Service is really what leadership is all about.”
Saturday’s attack was the fifth “insider attack” in the past four months against U.S. forces.
Initial reports indicate the attacker was a member of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces.
A GoFundMe page has been set up for Taylor’s family.