HAWTHORNE, Nev. (AP) - A 21-year-old Marine from Ohio was among the seven who died after a mortar shell explosion during mountain warfare training in Nevada's high desert.
Marine Lance Cpl. Josh Taylor's grandfather, Larry Stephens, confirmed Wednesday that he was killed in the training exercise Monday night.
Stephens says his grandson fulfilled a nearly lifelong dream when he joined the military right after graduating from high school in Marietta, Ohio in 2010.
Stephens says his grandson had talked about being a Marine since he was about 5, watching the History Channel and studying the military. After joining, he worked with mortars and served tours in Afghanistan and Kuwait, and was preparing for another tour in Afghanistan.
Stephens calls Taylor "polite, respectful," and says he would "do anything for anybody."
Taylor was engaged to be married, with a wedding planned for May.