First things first, thanks for reading. The last 24 hours have seen more traffic here than any other period in this blogs short history. More as in thousands more. Thanks for the hits, thanks for the shares and thanks for giving. Sadly that’s where we’ve come up short badly. Today his fund has almost double yesterday’s amount but it’s still far, far short of it’s goal.
We’re talking of course about Sgt. 1st Class Walter Taylor’s legal defense fund and efforts that are underway to help him raise $35,000.
This update is all about how you can donate (hint: that’s the link) and why you should donate. There will be, sadly, none of this blogs usual shenanigans – Taylor’s situation is far too dire for jokes. I mean that, its tough for me to say, I think almost anything can be a joke. Not this time though …
The good news is that even if you live overseas and have an APO mailing address you can STILL donate. In the address line where it asks for your city type in APO AE and in the line where they ask for your state, select New York and viola, donate away!
Pretty painless really, easier than purchasing on Amazon or iTunes so please, I beg you, head there now and donate whatever you can. Also again, repost this on Facebook and twitter and where ever else you find an audience because as you know or will soon know the recipient of this money is an American hero.
In an effort to fight out what appears to be politically motivated criminal charges SFC Taylor, wisely, hired a civilian attorney. Rather than risk it with a U.S. Army appointed defense lawyer, who may or may not be up to the job, SFC Taylor in an effort to save himself, his family and his career sought out and employed a civilian attorney well versed in military law.
This is an excellent move because, as you know, he did nothing wrong on July 21, 2011.
SFC Taylor, a combat engineer, and his platoon, set out on a road-clearing patrol that day to ensure that the roads in his area of operation were free of roadside bombs. They literally went out looking for bombs that day and every other day during their tour of duty. It was their job. They found the largest roadside bomb any of them had ever had the misfortune of encountering. Seconds after the devastating blast they were engaged by small-arms fire and during the course of that fire fight a black sedan, unbelievably, drove into the middle of it all. To the seasoned vets of his platoon this alone warranted serious suspicion that the vehicle’s occupants were enemy forces. Civilian vehicles just don’t drive into an ongoing fire fight.
This bizarre twist of events, coupled with the fact that during the ‘fog of battle’ several members of the platoon reported seeing shots coming from the sedan led to some of the platoon’s vehicle mounted heavy weapons engaging the vehicle.
After the firefight Taylor and three other members of the platoon followed a wire that had been used to detonate the road-side bomb – insanely the wire seemed to lead directly to the now silent black sedan.
SFC Taylor’s Platoon leader, just moments before he started following the wire, warned him that there were reports of insurgents using vehicles as bombs. The black sedan, he and everyone else thought, was obviously another bomb intent on taking his life and the life of his men.
As he followed the wire he came as close as 10 to 25 meters from the vehicle something else inexplicable happened. A figure dressed in black exited the vehicle from the rear-passenger door and ran toward the vehicle’s trunk. Reports differ but, by all estimates, Taylor has between 3 and 10 seconds to make a decision. Was the person friend or foe?
Think about that … 3 to 10 seconds. I imagine it’s something akin to this:
1 second: The door flies open.
2 seconds: A foot emerges from the door
3 seconds: A person’s lower torso emerges
4 seconds: The person is out of the vehicle, facing you and they are covered in black
5 seconds: The person begins in your direction and toward the trunk of the car
6 seconds …
You get the idea. Fearing for his life and more importantly fearing for the lives of his Soldiers Taylor shot and killed the cloaked figure only to discover, to his horror, he’d killed an innocent person. That in and of itself is more punishment they he deserves. It’s very unfortunate that it occurred but that it occurred is neither criminal nor careless – protecting yourself and your platoon from what would to any sane mind appear to be a suicide bomber is clearly the correct thing to do.
Here’s that link again, just in case you missed it. Any little bit, $5, $20 whatever amount you feel comfortable giving will help. If it’s $30 or more they’ll send you a bumber sticker that says I support SFC Taylor, how cool is that?
This isn’t going to be the last update as you can likely guess but I hope it’s the one that pushes his defense fund over the $10,000 mark. Finally, post this, reblog this, link this far and wide.
One final thing, I feel like I need to add a disclaimer. While I am retired from the U.S. Army and am currently employed as a Department of the Army Civilian the words here and my urging you to donate in no way reflect an official position by anyone or any entity besides me. This blog, and the updates regarding this case, are my opinion and should by no means be construed as endorsment by the U.S. Army or the U.S. government.
You know just in case you were wondering.