Retired Army Lt. Col. Michael Taylor was chosen by the Board of Senior Special Forces personnel to be a Distinguished Member of the Special Forces Regiment. It’s the highest honor that can be bestowed on a member of the U.S. Army Special Forces.
Taylor was selected due to his service while in the Army and after retirement.
To become a nominee for the designation requires exceptional contributions to the Special Forces Regiment such as success on the battlefield and continuing contribution to the regiment and their local community after they retire.
Taylor was active duty in Special Forces from 1967-1991.
During Taylor’s career he served in Vietnam where he commanded a battalion of the II Corps Mobile Strike Force, which included a number of deployments in the Battle of Ben Het.
In 1990-91, he led a Special Forces advisory team with a Saudi Battalion throughout Desert Storm that restored the Saudi border and led a small force in a raid, which rescued U.S. Marines.
Since retiring, Taylor has served as chairman of the Joint Special Operations Association/Special Forces Association POW/MIA Committee.
“His leadership led to the Committee receiving the National League of POW/MIA Families Award.
He was recently re-elected to his third term as vice president, Special Operations Association. (Taylor’s) many awards include the Department of Defense Antiterrorism Lifetime Achievement Award,” according to the nomination application.
Taylor was nominated for the award by Wade Ishimoto. They worked together on the POW/MIA committee for five years.
“I really got sentimental thinking of all the guys I served with, and that’s the reason I got the honor is all the guys that trained me, mentored me and sometimes obeyed me and followed me… I’m only being honored because of them. This is the greatest honor of my life,” Taylor said.
Fellow Anacortes resident, retired Army Col. Ronan Ellis, inducted Taylor into the Distinguished Member of the Special Forces Regiment in a small ceremony with some trusted people.
Taylor said he feels “totally honored and humbled and aware of how many more people deserve it more than me, but I got selected so I’m thrilled.”