The body of the late Joel Taylor has been released and transported home after an autopsy was conducted in Puerto Rico. He will be laid to rest early next week, according to a statement from his family to ABC News on Friday, January 26.
“Joel has been released in San Juan and is on its way home to Oklahoma. His funeral service will be held on Monday at 2 p.m. at the First Baptist Church of Elk City, Oklahoma,” the funeral home working with Taylors’ family told ABC.
As previously reported, Us Weekly confirmed on Thursday, January 25, that the 38-year-old Storm Chasers alum died while traveling on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship on January 23. Though the cause of death hasn’t been confirmed, it’s suspected that he passed away from a suspected overdose, according to TMZ.
A fellow passenger told the outlet that the meteorologist passed out on the dance floor on the vessel and was taken back to his room by two people the night before his death.
“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,” the cruise line told Us in a statement at the time. “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. A member of our Care Team is providing support and assistance to his family.”
The news was initially revealed in a tweet from Taylor’s former costar Reed Timmer. “RIP my best friend and storm chasing partner, Joel Taylor,” the 37-year-old wrote alongside photos of the two. “I am shocked and absolutely devastated by the loss of my incredible, caring friend. We chased so many intense storms, and I wish we could have just one more storm chase. I’ll miss you forever, Joel. We lost a legend.”