Sgt Deon Lamarr Taylor
Died Oct. 22, 2008 in Farah Afghanistan
Deon, age 30, was an New York City police officer serving with the New York National Guard. He grew up in the Bronx, loved to play GI Joe and was protective of his friends. He graduated from Carrabec High School in Portland, Maine, and then served four years in the Army. He then graduated from the State University of New York’s College at Old Westbury. He joined the police department in 2005, working in the transit bureau before joining the Brooklyn North Narcotics team in August 2007, where he served as an undercover officer. Deon joined the New York Army National Guard in 1997, was a member of Headquarters and Headquarters Company of the 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, based in Syracuse. Deon was a large, loving man, who gave all he had to his family and his country. He planned on attending law school when his enlistment was over. Deon’s awards include the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the National Defense Service Medal, New York State Aid to Civil Authorities Medal, and the Army Achievement Medal. He was awarded the Bronze Star, posthumously, along with the Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, and New York State Conspicuous Service Medal and promoted posthumously from Specialist to sergeant. Serving his second tour of duty in Afghanistan, he left in January 2008, and was helping to train Afghan security forces. Deon died in Bela Beluk, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device. He was set to return home in December and marry his fiancée in August 2009. Deon was buried at Long Island National Cemetery in Farmingdale, New York.