UPDATE: Force was a U.S. Army vet who had deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. This former Eagle Scout and combat vet was murdered by a terrorist thug on the boardwalk in Jaffa.
UPDATE #2: Initial reports that Force was married and that his wife was also injured in the attack were inaccurate. Taylor Force was not married.
Taylor Force, a 29 year-old graduate student at Vanderbilt University, was stabbed to death by a Palestinian Arab during a terrorist attack on Tuesday, March 8 in Jaffa, Israel.
Force was in Israel on a school trip, with other Vanderbilt’s Owen Graduate School of Management students, faculty and staff.
Ten others were wounded in the same attack, including a pregnant woman. No other Vanderbilt students were injured.
Vanderbilt’s Chancellor, Nocholas S. Zeppos, released a statement about the tragedy on Tuesday. He wrote:
Taylor embarked on this trip to expand his understanding of global entrepreneurship and also to share his insights and knowledge with start-ups in Israel. He exemplified the spirit of discovery, learning and service that is the hallmark of our wonderful Owen community. This horrific act of violence has robbed our Vanderbilt family of a young hopeful life and all of the bright promise that he held for bettering our greater world.
Before entering graduate school, Force served in the U.S. Army as a field artillery officer. His deployments included Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation New Dawn (Iraq), and Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan). He received a B.S. from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He was also an Eagle Scout.
Force died at the Wolfson Medical Center in Holon. He was from Lubbock, Texas.
A witness to the stabbings told Israel’s Channel 2 that he heard screams and saw the Arab man running towards him with a knife. The man took his guitar and bashed the terrorist over the head. The terrorist withdrew, but then went on to stab several more people before he was shot and killed.