William Lynwood Taylor
|A Note from The Virtual Wall|
On May 4, 2010 the names of three Soldiers and three Marines were added to the Vietnam Veterans
Memorial in Washington, DC. All six men died as a result of wounds sustained within the combat
zone during the Vietnam War. The Department of Defense reviews the medical records of service
members when requested by families to determine if their name is eligible to be included on the
memorial. The six names added to the Wall were:
The families of the service members gathered at "the Wall" to join the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, in honoring them at the annual Memorial Day observance May 31, 2010.
Family members of five of the six service members being honored gathered and read the names off the wall for the first time during the ceremony. Taylor was called "Wild Bill" by fellow Special Forces vets, but "Bacon Legs" by his sister. His legs were severely burned in the grenade explosion. He liked the nickname Bacon Legs. He disliked sympathy. "He was not one to let an injury slow him down," his sister said. "All he wanted was to move on with life."
He attended the opening ceremony for the Wall on Nov. 13, 1982 with his daughter Jennifer. He stood by the Wall, in his civilian clothes. His daughter said "There were thousands of people. The Mall was packed. My dad was touching the names. Vets came up, they said, "You were there, weren't you? They could tell, even in his civilian clothes. He did not like even to talk about the war. He was very humble in that way."
"They asked him what unit and he said, 'Oh, the Devils in Baggy Pants.'"
Born December 19, 1941, in Takoma Park, MD, he enlisted in the Army in 1960, serving in Airborne Units. After his first tour in Vietnam as an enlisted soldier he returned to the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, NC. He then volunteered for OCS at Fort Benning GA. "Bill" served as an officer in the 5th, 7th, 11th, and 12th Special Forces Groups (Airborne). He was a Company Commander in the 5th SFG(A). During his long career he also served with the United States Army Institute for Military Assistance (USAIMA).
The U. S. Army Office of the Surgeon General (OTSG) has made the determination that Lt. Col. Taylor died as a result of wounds sustained by hostile action on Sept. 21, 1970 in Vietnam. He had been hit with a large launcher type of grenade and was severely burned on both legs, had shrapnel embedded all over his body and suffered a bleeding head wound. Doctors never could get all the shrapnel out. He died as a result of complications from the embedded shrapnel.
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