Marine death mix-up

GILBERTSVILLE, Pa.- December 7, 2009 22-year-old Jonathan Andrew Taylor is a U.S. Marine Corporal serving in Afghanistan. And his mom and dad, Pattie and James Taylor of Gilbertsville, worry every day.

"Everytime I came home at night I'd look down the driveway and worry that there was a staff car out there. You know that's how they do the notification so it was something every day you know you worry about that," James said.

The Taylor's even set it up to receive "Google alerts" any time their son might be mentioned in a media report.

Late last week that's exactly what happened.

"There was probably like 50 Google alerts with his name so I opened it up and the first one I saw was a dated death notice with John's picture," said Pattie.

For two days the Taylor's thought their son was dead.

But the details of what really happened began to crystallize over the weekend. It turns out a different Lance Corporal Marine, also named Jonathan A. Taylor, also 22-years- old and serving in the same Afghan province was the one who was killed last week.

The Taylors say this whole experience has put them on a roller coaster of emotions, that ended with a lingering sadness for the other Jonathan A. Taylor.

"You're happy because oh my son is safe but then there's another boy that has the same exact name as my son that's not here no more. So I feel bad for his family," said Pattie.

Now, the proud mom and dad have a simple message for the son they thought they lost.

"Be careful and we'll see you soon," James said.

The Taylor's don't know if the Department of Defense or the media that circulated the wrong death notice photo but quite frankly they say they don't care because their welcome home banner is going up next month. Jonathan's tour of duty ends soon and they expect him home in about 4 weeks.

Copyright © 2024 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.