Storm chaser Joel Taylor found dead on Royal Caribbean cruise

Discovery Channel’s popular storm chaser Joel Taylor has been confirmed dead on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship docked in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the local police told NBC News on Wednesday.

Taylor was vacationing aboard the ship when the police found him deceased in his cabin, officials said. He was 38.

“As is our standard procedure, law enforcement was notified and responded to the ship when it arrived in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Tuesday, January 23,” Owen Torres, manager of global corporate communications for Royal Caribbean Cruises said in an emailed statement to NBC News.

“We extend our most sincere and heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the 38-year-old male guest from the United States who died while onboard Harmony of the Seas,” Torres said.

The cause of death is still unknown, though police who responded to the calls said that they do not at this time suspect that any foul play occurred. San Juan police told NBC News that cruise ship employees called the department initially, which was asked to turn the investigation over to federal agents since the death seemed to have occurred in U.S. waters, not the island.

Taylor’s body is currently undergoing autopsy at the Instituto de Ciencias Forenses, Karixia Ortiz, the press officer of the institute’s department of public security, told NBC News. Ortiz said that Taylor’s relatives had identified the body.

Reed Timmer, Taylor’s co-star on Discovery’s “Storm Chasers” was the first to publicly announce his partner’s death in a tweet from his verified account. He also posted about his death on Facebook. Both posts withheld the details of Taylor’s death.

“I can tell you that Joel was at a very happy time in his life, and we’ve been brainstorming non-stop this winter about chasing plans this spring,” Timmer said in his Facebook post. “He has the biggest heart of anyone I know, and has always been there for me through thick and thin.”

In the hours before Taylor’s final location was confirmed, fans on the internet considered the death “mysterious.” Dozens of posts on social media and articles from various news outlets, including the Daily Mail and USA Today, pointed to the fact that Taylor’s father had said that his son’s untimely death was not related to his job.

The Discovery Channel tweeted about Taylor, but a representative has not yet responded for a comment.

Categories: National News, News, US & World News

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