Body of Storm Chasers Star Joel Taylor Has Been Released Following Autopsy in Puerto Rico
Joel Taylor was found dead in his cabin on the Royal Caribbean Cruise ship Harmony of the Seas on Tuesday
The body of late Storm Chasers star Joel Taylor has been released following an autopsy in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The Institute of Forensic Sciences of Puerto Rico conducted an autopsy on Taylor after his family identified him Wednesday, PEOPLE confirms, and his body has been released and transported to a funeral home. Results of his autopsy and toxicology report have not yet been released.
Taylor’s body is reportedly being transported back to his hometown of Elk City, Oklahoma, according to The Blast — which first reported the news about the completion of the autopsy — and a funeral service is scheduled for Monday.
The 38-year-old Discovery Channel star was found dead in his cabin on the Royal Caribbean Cruise ship Harmony of the Seas which docked in San Juan on Tuesday.
“The U.S. Coast Guard in San Juan, Puerto Rico was notified today in the afternoon by the Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas cruise ship that they had a death on board,” Ricardo Castrodad, public affairs officer for the Coast Guard’s San Juan sector, told PEOPLE.
Though an investigation is already underway, Castrodad said at the time that the Coast Guard had yet to inspect the cruise ship.
“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 a statement to PEOPLE.
“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. A member of our Care Team is providing support and assistance to his family,” he added.
At the time of Taylor’s death, the cruise liner was hosting Atlantis Events’ all-gay Caribbean Cruise which sailed from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, on Jan. 20 and is scheduled to return on Jan. 27.
The Discovery Channel also released a statement to PEOPLE: “We are so saddened to hear about Joel’s passing. We will always remember him fondly as an incredible meteorologist and driver of ‘The Dominator.’ Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this difficult time.”
- Reporting by ALEXIA FERNANDEZ and KAREN MIZOGUCHI