WASHINGTON— U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) spoke on the Senate floor today in honor of U.S. Marine Corps Lance Corporal Taylor Conrad, a Louisiana native who lost his life on April 3 during a training mission in California.
CASSIDY: Today, I want to honor the life and sacrifice of one soldier in particular, U.S. Marine Corps Lance Corporal Taylor Conrad, who was 24 years old and was of Central, Louisiana.
Now, our military men and women deserve recognition. They sacrifice time away from family and friends, and put themselves in harm’s way to advance our country’s interests. Every day, they risk their lives to secure our safety.
But, in the case of Taylor Conrad, along with three of his fellow marines, he tragically lost his life last week when their helicopter crashed during a training mission in California.
A Louisiana native and Central High School graduate, Taylor exemplified the qualities of a good marine. He was tough, compassionate and wanted to help others.
In high school, Taylor played football and was an accomplished power lifter. He also volunteered in the “Best Buddies” program, matching students with schoolmates in the special ed program.
A teacher said, “The one thing that made Taylor such a special friend with our kids is he didn’t approach them in a way that he felt sorry for them. He approached them in a way where he truly wanted to be their friend.”
The school’s athletic director said Taylor’s “love for those who need the most [love] is something I will never forget.”
There was one child who would never speak, except with Taylor he would laugh. And that was the effect Taylor had upon others.
After school, Taylor decided to serve our country by joining the Marines. He went on to become a CH-53 helicopter crew chief in the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing’s Heavy Helicopter Squadron 465.
One Marine who served with Taylor had this to say of him: “He was the gold standard. He pushed everybody [and] he cared about everybody. I wouldn’t be the Marine I am now if it was not for” Taylor.
Our hearts go out to everyone whose life was touched by Taylor. Especially praying for his family, including his daughter born just last October.
Their loss is great, hearts are heavy, but I want them to know that Louisiana and our entire country mourn with them, because our loss is great too.
When they lost a brother, a son, and a dad, we lost a good man, a great Marine and a fellow American.