Everyday Hero: Teen helps veterans in need before joining the U.S. Marine Corps

By Bill Murphy, Everyday Hero Host
Last Updated: Monday, July 17, 2017, 8:11 AM EDT

Timothy Taylor is 17 years old and about to start his senior year at Sarasota Military Academy.  His focus, however, is year’s ahead.

“I’m looking at getting commissioned in the Marine Corps, either going through R.O.T.C. or enlisting and going through officers candidate school to become an officer,” Taylor said.

He decided to volunteer at Goodwill, working with homeless veterans.

“We helped homeless people in the area receive things that they did not have such as bikes, food, and we really just helped out the community,” Taylor said.

Recently his energies have been directed at the American flag; respect for it, care for it, and the proper way to end its service.

And he’s on the hunt for flags whose time has come.

“I’ve been doing it now for a few months and we collect them from my school, people who donate them, or just organizations that have them and they can’t be serviced anymore.”

Timothy says when retiring Old Glory there is a process to be followed.

“You’re going to want to make sure that it is folded properly in the proper manner, which is the triangular fold where the stars are only showing and the stripes are tucked away,” Taylor explained.  “Once you have that then it can be properly discarded of by burning and burying the ashes.”

Goodwill Manasota vice president Veronica Brandon Miller says Taylor amazingly put in more than 1,000 volunteer hours in his first year.

“He saw that we were collecting unserviceable flags and he said can i help with that,” Brandon Miller said.  “Education is power.  That’s what he wanted to give people.  The power to understand the proper way to honor our flag.”

For his service, Taylor was awarded the prestigious Goodwill Presidential Volunteer Service Award.

Just part of his day for a remarkable Everyday Hero.

“I mean it’s a great honor,” Taylor said.  “I’m just giving back to my community and doing my patriotic duty.”