Devoted friend to hundreds, talented athlete, 2009 Claremont High graduate
Taylor Kristofer Meyer, 27, who attended Mountain View and Condit elementary schools, El Roble Intermediate, and was a 2009 Claremont High School graduate, was robbed and brutally murdered by three attackers on November 9 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, where he had been vacationing with 13 of his friends.
Mr. Meyer attended the University of Colorado in Boulder, where he was an active member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity and graduated with a double major in communications and sociology in 2013.
He was born July 3, 1991 at San Dimas Community Hospital to parents Kris and Krista Meyer of Claremont. He was a product of Claremont’s tightly knit community and developed scores of close friends throughout his 18 years in the City of Trees. An avid athlete all his life, he played AYSO soccer and Little League baseball. At Claremont High he concentrated on baseball, where he excelled as a varsity pitcher during his junior and senior years.
Although he was a fine pitcher, his natural talent was most evident on the golf course. At age 8, he got his first set of clubs for his birthday, and although he had never before swung one, he made par on the first two holes of the now closed Claremont Golf Course. Mr. Meyer twice competed in the World Long Drive Championship’s qualifying round, but on both occasions his second attempts fell short by just 6 yards to advance him on to the competition’s final round. Not only could he routinely drive a golf ball over 350 yards, and occasionally over 400, he almost always hit them straight, his family shared. The only reason he carried a 10 handicap was that he played only about seven rounds of golf per year, they added.
Employing his innate entrepreneurial spirit on college summer breaks during the recession, he operated a successful mobile car detailing service. Shortly after graduating from college, Mr. Meyer began working in inside sales for United Parcel Service in Phoenix. He was quickly promoted to outside sales and relocated to Southern California, where he lived in Brentwood and covered the Culver City area. From Brentwood he moved on to Hermosa Beach, where he lived for about 18 months until his tragic death.
At UPS, he received numerous accolades for his sales achievements and had recently been promoted to senior account executive, where he was responsible for a much larger sales area with larger accounts. More than a dozen of his co-workers and supervisors attended his memorial service and commented to his family and friends about his vibrant personality, strong work ethic and outstanding sales results at UPS.
“Taylor lived large and loved in the same way,” his family said. “If you could call Taylor your friend, you were truly blessed. Taylor was a Christian and a uniting force amongst often diverging groups of people. He was an efficient and effective organizer, leader, loyal friend, and protector to literally hundreds of classmates, co-workers, family and friends. Although he had considerable accomplishments throughout his life about which he could boast, not until his death did many of his friends and family find out about them. From hitting four home runs in a single baseball game and performing an unassisted triple play in tee-ball, winning the Hermosa Beach four-person volleyball tournament, providing significant financial and organizational assistance to strangers in need, to saving a friend’s life by tackling a knife-wielding assailant. Taylor was a humble young man who developed hundreds of loyal lifelong friends. Upon achievements alone, Taylor lived a full and purpose driven life within his short 27 years. He was an avid fan of the Dodgers, Denver Broncos and the University of Colorado Buffaloes. He loved Jesus, Old Glory, his family, friends, and attending country music concerts with his many friends across the nation.”
He was preceded in death by two cousins who died in separate tragedies at ages 18 and 20. The untimely deaths caused the family to recently begin using the hashtag #Meyer-Strong, a digital testimony to the strength of their faith and family, they said.
Mr. Meyer is survived by his parents Kris and Krista Meyer; brother Colby and his wife Sarah Meyer; sister Megan, her husband Bobby Blackstock and their two sons, Jackson and Jayden; grandmother Greta Meyer, of Algona, Iowa; three uncles; three aunts; ten cousins; and the most loyal friends a person could ask for that stretched across the USA, his family shared.
Three candlelight vigils, each attended by between 100 and 200 of his friends, were held in Hermosa Beach, Denver and Claremont. His November 17 memorial service at Purpose Church in Pomona was attended by more than 700 people from all corners of the United States, and well over 1,200 live-streamed the service nationwide.
His murder received international media coverage and has brought significant attention to the violence in and dangers of vacationing in Mexico. The Hermosa Beach City Council acknowledged the tragedy at a recent meeting, and a retired US congressman arranged to have a flag, which will be returned to his parents, flown over the nation’s capitol in Mr. Meyer’s honor.