Lawrence Coburn Taylor
|HOME OF RECORD
888 Paramount Road, Oakland, CA
|NEXT OF KIN
Father, Mrs. Lawrence H. Taylor
|DATE OF BIRTH
May 12, 1920
January 14, 1941
|DATE OF LOSS
August 24, 1942
|CAMPAIGN / AREA
MIA (Declared Dead)
25 August 1943
STAD with VMF-223
|CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS
Second Lieutenant Taylor was one of five VMF-212 “Hell Hounds” assigned to temporary aviation duty with the amalgam Cactus Air Force out of Henderson Field, Guadalcanal.
On 24 August 1942, every available plane was scrambled to intercept a large Japanese bombing raid, but the engine of Taylor’s Wildcat (BuNo 02084) failed to start. Undaunted, “Red” Taylor repaired the engine and took off alone, catching the tail end of the dogfight.
Taylor and 2Lt. Cloyd “Rex” Jeans knocked down one of the bombers, but Taylor was shot down in turn by a Zero from the Japanese fighter escort. His aircraft was last seen falling out of control; no parachute were observed.
“Red” Taylor was declared dead on 25 August 1943.
Silver Star, Purple Heart
|LAST KNOWN RANK
|STATUS OF REMAINS
Manila American Cemetery
Temporarily removed for editing and updating. Contact the webmaster for information on this Marine.
The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Second Lieutenant Lawrence C. Taylor (MCSN: 0-7513), United States Marine Corps Reserve, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity while serving with Marine Fighting Squadron TWO TWENTY-THREE (VMF-223), in action against enemy Japanese forces in the Solomon Islands on 24 August 1942. Prevented by a faulty engine from taking off with his flight to attack a hostile force of greatly superior strength, Second Lieutenant Taylor skillfully effected hasty repairs and at the first opportunity took off alone to join his comrades in the action. Although it was his first combat flight and he was entirely unfamiliar with the area, his superb airmanship and dauntless courage under extremely adverse conditions enabled him to destroy one heavy bomber before his own plane was shot down. Second Lieutenant Taylor’s exemplary conduct and unswerving devotion to duty were an inspiration to the members of his squadron and in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.
Articles and Records:
Red Taylor attended University of California Berkeley from 1939-1941. He dropped out after his junior year to join the Navy.