Ceremony to honor youth murdered on college campus

Cris Ritchie Editor

September 26, 2013

HAZARD – It has been less than a year since Taylor Cornett’s life was tragically cut short following a shooting on the campus of Hazard Community and Technical College. This coming weekend, members of the community she called home are set to gather to remember her life and dedicate a local landmark in her honor.

At only 12 years old, Taylor Cornett was the youngest of three people murdered on Jan. 22, which also included her father Jackie and cousin Caitlin. It was an unthinkable series of events that unfolded on that day, and left the community in shock.

Earlier this year Perry County resident Mike Turner, who for the past few years has been working to honor the county’s military veterans by renaming bridges in their honor, put forth the idea of doing the same for Taylor Cornett. Larry Caudill, Taylor’s basketball coach at R.W. Combs Elementary, took the idea to her mother, who was in agreement.

Simone Beverly, one of Taylor’s teammates, told the Herald in May it was something they wanted to do so that no one would forget what Taylor meant to them, and they hope to continue to work toward doing similar projects in the future.

“We hope we can do more things like this,” Beverly said at the time. “We haven’t thought of any yet, but we want to do things to keep her memory alive.”

Turner and Taylor’s teammates in May presented a resolution to the fiscal court to rename the bridge next to R.W. Combs on Highway 15 the Taylor Jade Cornett Memorial bridge. The resolution was also approved in Frankfort, and the group raised funds to pay for the sign, which was installed just before the beginning of the school year.

The dedication ceremony for the Taylor Jade Cornett Memorial Bridge is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 28 at 1 p.m. It will be held at R.W. Combs Elementary.